Blog 6 “Specific characteristics”
HBY: Then there’s the matter of colours. Lely products are packaged in specific colours. Red for acid, blue for alkaline, green for peroxide and grey for udder care products. Is that an international standard for Lely?
EH: No, unfortunately not. We have been able to introduce this as a standard within Europe, but we have not yet succeeded in doing so everywhere outside of Europe. This is due, for example, to the fact that they are sometimes very large countries with different logistics. Or that we get these goods from different factories.
HBY: It is clear that we do not yet have uniformity internationally in the colours of the packaging. But why does Lely value this so much?
EH: Those colours are related to the specific characteristics of the products. Lyes, acids, peroxides and other agents all have their own characteristics. It’s better not to mix them up if you realise what we use them for. The use of colours is simply an additional aid to distinguish products from each other. Our motivation is mainly based on experience: over the years, partly because of this, we have seen a significant decrease in the number of incidents in the European market.
HBY: That sounds like music to my ears. And I understand that both the jerry cans and 200-litre barrels in Europe are in this concept?
EH: That’s right. 1,000 liter containers – not yet. But what isn’t can still come. I really hope that we can extend this choice of colours internationally as well. However, I expect that it will take some time.
HBY: Why do we have to worry so much about those specific characteristics?
EH: It’s not just for fun that we have different products. Lyes and acids are specific for cleaning. Peroxides are for disinfection and udder care is self-explanatory. The compositions differ. You cannot exchange these applications with each other because they differ so much. Some products are therefore corrosive and can have an etching effect – totally unsuitable for contact with, for example, the skin. Other products are mild again and do nothing when it comes to cleaning, for example.
HBY: That sounds familiar, unfortunately. Recently I had a situation where someone accidentally put a hoof bath product in the robot. The storage area was all mixed up, they didn’t read the label and that’s why it went wrong. Fortunately, we received a notification from the robot, it was quickly resolved, and no bad things happened. It was a blue jerry can, by the way.
EH: Colours aren’t the cure. We try as much as possible to link the colours to the specific properties, but that is for Lely and not even everywhere. If you also use other products, I can’t say it often enough: read the label, keep products apart and give them a permanent place.