Customer: Texel Cooperativa Società Agricola
Sector: Food - Apple distributor
Location: Naturno (BZ) - Italy
Established in 1977, Texel Cooperativa Società Agricola is a member company of the VIP Consortium (Association of Fruit and Vegetable Cooperatives of Val Venosta) which produces about 6,900 tons of apples, pears and apricots a year by its 325 members. Until the recent past the company managed its warehouse "manually": pallets were stored on the ground and handled by forklifts including for the loading of the trucks. In particular, this system made the management of flows difficult and unsafe, both for personnel and for goods.
Thus it became clear to Texel that the entire operational management needed to be revised by automating processes, through a solution that would facilitate the increased speed of order preparation, adequately respond to the increasingly just-in-time requests of customers, and guarantee the proper preservation of apples until they are shipped. The request was therefore not just the reorganization of the space: Texel wanted a new system to increase the safety of personnel, reduce handling operations using forklifts, and improve the control of stock, with full traceability and reduction of errors.
The Texel fruit and vegetable cooperative of the Val Venosta Consortium chose to “revolutionize” its logistics with a self-supporting, temperature-controlled automatic storage system. The structure, designed and built by the Ferretto Group, made it possible to efficiently manage different types of pallets, to optimize space, and reduce shipment preparation time. In the surface of 900-plus square meters there are now more than 1200 pallet spaces.
The Ferretto Group responded to Texel's requests with a self-supporting automatic storage system for the storage of pallets of finished products in a +3°C cold room. The new structure is able to manage pallets coming from the packaging lines, store them in the storage system, and prepare shipments on the loading docks. The 4 load level storage system is based on seismic-resistant multi-depth pallet racking. Pallet picking and placing operations are managed by means of 8 automatic shuttles while a circuit consisting of 6 Fast-Ring steering shuttles are used to convey the pallets to the lowerators serving the loading docks. The storage system is also structured to manage different pallet formats thanks to the use of a sub-pallet (slave pallet) which is coupled to certain pallets at the entrance of the storage system and decoupled at their exit. The solution enabled Texel to immediately record an optimization of both order management and the entire production process: loading times on trucks were halved compared to the previous handling method. Errors have also been reduced thanks to the management of inputs and outputs through the Ferretto Group WMS interconnected to the company ERP.