Beverage Warehouse ErgonomicsSteve Cappella
Beverage Warehouse Ergonomics
The future of automation in the beverage industry will consist of using a hybrid of conventional warehouse systems complimented by ergonomic and robotic solutions.
Using equipment as a compliment to beverage warehouses has been in place for years – such as forklifts, layer pickers and stretch wrappers. These systems reduce heavy lifting, repetitive motion and manual stretch wrapping.
The recent addition of vacuum lifting for half barrel kegs is an excellent solution for reducing heavy lifting of one-off keg picking. The days of hunt and pick, location memorization and “everything everywhere” in beverage warehouses are coming to an end.
The beverage warehouse of the future will include a home for each item to ensure that warehouse personnel are productive and safe. The ROI on ergonomic systems is almost immediate by creating a safer and more productive work environment.
Sell More High Volume Items in Layers and Increase Sales
With the ever changing SKU mix of the top 10-15 items accounting for a large percentage of overall daily pick volume, hand picking these items caused extreme repetitive motion and unsafe interaction with floor picking personnel and replenishment forklifts.
Layer picking systems are very common among large beverage distributors, however the systems can benefit distributors with lower volumes since they are excellent for chain stores and high volume stops.
Until recently, layer picking systems typically required extensive floor space to make room for in-bound and out-bound pallet moving on the layer line.
Today’s layer picking systems are equipped with 5 deep pallet flow that allows for in-bound staging by date code and the floor level is utilized for partial pallet staging.