Food Logistics

OCT 2014

Food Logistics serves the entire food supply chain industry with targeted content for manufacturers, retailers, and distributors.

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Page 28 of 39 FOOD LOGISTICS • OCTOBER 2014 29 The mezzanine option Installing a mezzanine is another way f&b warehouses can add storage space, says Shannon Salchert, marketing coordinator at Cubic Designs, which specializes in mez- zanines. A mezzanine creates an additional floor without removing existing floor space since racks can be installed beneath a mezza- nine. The mezzanines are built off site, then installed in the location, leaving minimal dis- ruption to processes on the plant floor. Mezzanines can help in providing access to large conveyors and/or palletizers, Salchert says. This was the case at New Belgium Brewery, a Fort Collins, Colo. brewery that was looking to support a bottle conveyor and depalletizer. The brewery wanted to maximize floor space while accommodating diverse elevations and multiple access points to new equipment. The steel mezzanine provided an overhead platform to support a bottle conveyor from a depalletizer to ground-level infeed of filling equipment. The platform includes stairs, ladders and crossovers that provide access to the conveyor system. To address all the various racking consid- erations, the Rack Manufacturers Institute (RMI) recently released guidelines for storage layout, racking installation, forklift consider- ations, aisle considerations, etc. RMI also issued guidelines for the assess- ment and repair or replacement of damaged racks. The RMI developed this document in recognizing that used racks continue to play a big role in today's warehouses, says Shawn MacDonald, president of Joliet, Ill.- based Mac Rak, which specializes in rack repair and replacement. MacDonald notes that high employee turnover is a major safety issue in f&b warehouses; employees need to be trained how to operate forklifts and pallet jacks safely to not only prevent accidents, but to minimize damage to racks. As f&b companies respond to changing customer demands, supply chain managers need to consider what racking system will yield the greatest productivity, efficiently, safely and sustainably. The traditional static racking systems continue to meet many of today's warehouse needs, but new concepts are emerging. ◆ For more information: ADVANCE STORAGE PRODUCTS, 770-748-4860, CUBIC DESIGNS, 800-826-7061, EXGLOBE, 514-855-0097, HANNIBAL INDUSTRIES, 323-513-1200, MAC RAK, 815-723-7400, MWPVL INTERNATIONAL, 514-482-3572, ORBIS CORP., 800-890-7292, POWER AUTOMATION SYSTEMS, 209-249-1616, RACK MANUFACTURERS INSTITUTE, 704-676-1190, STORAGE SOLUTIONS, TWINLODE, 800-535-6719, As Volume Grows, Consider Automation Traditional conveyor and static storage approaches work well for smaller enterprises, however, in high- density, high-throughput operations, employing ware- house automation technologies will be more cost- effective long-term, says Rodney Tipton, president of Power Automation Systems (PAS). Candi- dates for automating their operations typically have more substantial runs per SKU, require deep lane storage, and have a medium to high throughput. ◆

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