Food & Beverage Fulfilment

Solutions for Feeding the World and Quenching Thirsts

Today’s food and beverage consumer is increasingly selective, prioritising a variety of factors like a greater range of purchase options, better nutritional options, more eco-friendly foods and more.

To meet these demands, you need to grow efficiently and reliably without making major changes to your operations and with moderate investment. These solutions must address your challenges and give you an edge in the competitive marketplace.

What are some current challenges for food and beverage producers and distributors?

Labour is not always a dependable resource. For example, a company may experience high employee turnover rates or face an insufficient applicant pool that doesn’t satisfy its demand. Labour unavailability is leading to justification timeframes as long as 7-10 years in some cases.

What are some successful food and beverage fulfilment strategies for producers & distributors?

Unit load Automated Storage and Retrieval Systems (AS/RS) is a technology pioneered by Dematic 60 years ago. It maximises storage efficiency while minimising the land and energy requirements for environmentally controlled operations.

Live loading of trailers is widely used in the food industry, where it’s common to allocate two hours to that process. That two-hour time interval can be reduced to as little as 30 minutes by staging outbound loads in automated storage retrieval systems located adjacent to the shipping docks. Reducing the time to load a truck gives working time back to the transportation asset (the truck and trailer), allowing that asset to get more work done during any given day. When you extend that productivity increase across multiple operations, it frees up capacity in your transportation network. It also allows the warehouse to operate with few shipping doors—a major win for cold chain applications that benefit from less air infiltration and energy loss.

A variety of automation technologies, such as Dematic Multi-shuttle, facilitate kitting and goods-to-person processes to help streamline your meal kit in-plant logistics. Robotic palletising systems stack the outbound shipments in an efficient manner while the overarching warehouse control system assures that date codes are properly managed, thus minimising any food waste caused by improper date rotation.

Inventory shrink is frequently associated with discounts due to old age product or in process handling damage. Using automation provides much tighter and more accurate control of the process. You know where everything is and how old it is, and that the automation won’t just “accidentally pick” the newer product first. Additionally, automation is far kinder and gentler to the goods it’s handling when compared to the manual alternative. Across multiple audits, companies converting from manual to automated warehouses learned that eliminating handling damage realised far greater positive financial impact than they predicted pre-project.  

The challenge is real, but so is the solution. Increasing SKU proliferation is often referred to as a “growing tail of the curve” and Goods-To-Person Picking solutions are a superior remedy for this ailment. The small, complex orders can be delivered efficiently by precisely sequencing the delivery to the exact order it will be delivered; sequencing buffers help you orchestrate the multi-stop delivery in the most efficient means possible.

What automation solutions should you consider for your food and beverage solutions?

All food and beverage producers and distributors face some similar challenges, but your segment of the industry is dealing with unique challenges.

Dematic food and beverage fulfilment solutions help you tackle current challenges and plan for future challenges. Dematic software provides tools for order assembly, peaks and valleys in order volume, controlled access to inventory, product tracking, order/inventory accuracy and first-expired/first-out processing.

  • Individualisation/premiumisation is a primary driver of SKU proliferation
  • Consumer are asking for more premium meats
  • Sustainability, health & wellness and animal welfare all contribute to consumer selectivity. These prime motivators are also driving consumer interest in plant-based, insect and lab-grown proteins
  • Globally, 60% of consumers want to know where food comes from and how it is made
  • The dairy case is changing; approximately 25% of dairy production isn’t animal based
  • Protein production has historically more depending on labour than any other food production sector; labour unavailability is adversely affecting production capacity
  • Drought is an area of increasing concern for protein production

What criteria should you use when evaluating a food and beverage fulfilment automation partner?

An industry leader with experience working at the forefront of supply chain and warehouse automation, Dematic’s success is built on an approach that guides our customers with reliable and easy to integrate solutions that consistently deliver on business goals and address challenges. With Dematic as your partner, you know that our solutions work for your bottom line and that you have access to a range of products that fit your current and future needs. Most importantly, we are always available to provide to in-person and virtual support. We’re committed to your success.

Powered by Dematic software and exceptional 24/7 customer support, Dematic solutions take automated order fulfilment to higher levels of efficiency. With its modular and scalable components, be assured your Dematic solution will evolve to meet ever-changing consumer demands.

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