Foodstuffs’ new DC wins CILT’s Supply Chain Innovation Award

Foodstuffs SI Team Winners

SYDNEY, NSW – Foodstuffs South Island Limited (FSSI) received the Chartered Institute of Logistics and Transport’s (CILT) prestigious Supply Chain Innovation Award at CILT’s Annual Forum Day and Awards event in Auckland on October 21, 2015.

FSSI has significantly transformed its South Island supply chain in recent years, including establishing a new 46,000 m2 ambient distribution centre (DC) at Hornby in Christchurch.

FSSI’s Logistics Operations Manager, Kris Lancaster, said: “As our business grew, our supply chain had become a bit fragmented. Creating a new purpose-designed facility enabled us to restructure our supply chain and create a modern DC that supports our current and future store delivery requirements.”

Prior to the construction of the new ambient DC, FSSI was operating three DCs in the South Island: its original DC in Christchurch at Papanui, which was more than 40 year’s old; a second DC in Dunedin; and a 13,000 m2 DC at Hornby in Christchurch, which commenced operations in 2007.

The new ambient DC in Christchurch covers nearly three times the area of the previous DC at Hornby, and has enabled the business to substantially increase centralised distribution to its South Island stores.

FSSI’s DC at Papanui has been closed and its operations transitioned to the new Hornby DC, while the Dunedin DC has been retained to support FSSI’s stores in the southern region of the South Island with fast moving high volume SKUs.

The Hornby DC services around 150 New World, PAK’nSAVE, Four Square and Henry’s BWS stores, plus a further 1,000 foodservice and convenience customers throughout the South Island.

“All three of our South Island DCs were manual operations and a key priority for our new DC was to introduce automation for our high volume split case items and small bulk picking requirements, which typically account for around 25% of our total order volume,” said Mr Lancaster.

Key design initiatives included minimising the site footprint to reduce travel time between picks, optimising systems flexibility to enable the efficient handling of various SKUs and order types, and implementing integrated order fulfilment systems (OFS) to increase productivity, improve accuracy and raise service levels.

Key features of the DC’s integrated logistics systems, which were supplied by Dematic, include:

  • A seismic-designed ColbyRACK pallet racking system with the capacity to house more than 43,000 pallets to a height of 10.7 m
  • A two-level split case and small bulk zone picking module with zone-skipping conveyors
  • RF and voice-directed picking systems
  • Dematic IQ order fulfilment software.

The ambient DC, which is staffed by a team of around 400, distributes an average of 450,000 cases (8,500 pallets) per week, with the site’s temperature-controlled DC distributing a further 200,000+ cases (5,000 pallets) each week. The DC has been designed to accommodate growth for several years, and provides FSSI with the ability to distribute 1,000,000+ cases per week during peak periods.

FSSI also won CILT’s Award for Implementation and Practice, and FSSI’s Inventory Manager, Simon Olsen, was presented with CILT’s Young Achiever of the Year Award, making it a very successful evening for the business.

Further information: Dematic Pty Limited, 24 Narabang Way, Belrose NSW 2085. Tel: +61 2 9486 5555. Fax: +61 2 9486 5511.