Cargill Meat Solutions Corporation transformed their manual protein distribution center into a cost-efficient, automated facility, doubling throughput capacity with dramatic reductions in cost per case handled.
- Even working 24/7 they were
having difficulty filling orders.
- Increasing SKU complexity —
meats offered by cut, weight,
grade and age.
- Inflexible distribution center had
no automation, poor accuracy,
high volumes of product damage/
waste and poor delivery.
- Fresh beef is a short turnaround
item, time-based performance,
matching products to orders,
managing inventory and shipping
are critical elements in order
- Potential injury and demanding
conditions led to lack of skilled
labor and high employee turnover.
Once beef is packed in the
processing center, it is conveyed
through a 600-foot skyway
bridge to a new 50,000 square
foot distribution building adjacent
to processing. The building is
essentially a giant refrigerator, with
temperatures at a cool 28°F.
Cases are sorted into lanes in
the AS/RS. The mini-load system
consists of 20 aisles where 20
cranes handle inbound and
outbound cases with 78,000 storage
Depending on customer needs,
some cases are sent through an
automated palletizer and stretchwrapping
system, while others are
diverted to extendable conveyors for
direct loading onto outbound trucks.
The efficient system continuously
deposits products into storage while
simultaneously picking cases for