Welcome to the March 1st issue of Warehouse & Logistics News. When it comes to operating big box warehouses, there’s always room for thinking ‘outside the box’ about what’s happening inside. In our exclusive Intralogistics feature, we look at one of the hottest topics in industry circles, which is transforming people’s thinking about the flow of goods and related data inside warehouses, fulfillment and distribution centres and largescale manufacturing plants.
In our feature we take the mystery out of intralogisitics with a helpful definition from Invata, the US supply chain specialists. We look at the key suppliers and what they have to offer, including conveying and dynamic storage specialists Interroll and warehousing experts Gideon Hillman Consulting. We also have reports of major projects from automation innovators Swisslog, who are transforming European healthcare logistics and Knapp, helping John Lewis towards its goal of becoming the UK’s leading omni-channel retailer at Magna Park.
Warehouse safety continues to be a prime concern and on our front page we have a stark reminder that drive-away mistakes, occurring when vehicles leave the loading bay too early, are a major cause of accidents in the warehouse. Hörmann’s latest MWB Wheelblocker, a new piece of safety equipment that locks lorries into the loading bay, is designed to prevent such accidents. The leading door systems manufacturer made the decision to develop the MWB Wheelblocker after the HSE revealed that 15% of workplace transport injuries happen during unloading and loading, particularly when vehicles leave the loading bay too early.
Staying with the safety theme, we have an interview with Tony Baggott, Sales and Marketing Director at Fortress Interlocks. Fortress Interlocks has over 40 years’ industrial safety market experience, designing and manufacturing safety access and control systems which safeguard personnel from injury and capital assets from damage. A recent major project involved protecting workers in a large, multilevel automotive facility.
Also in this issue we have features on Pallets, Packaging and Warehouse IT. In the Pallet Focus, we review the rationale for choosing different pallet materials. We have product news about Cabka’s electrostatic-free plastic pallet and The Alternative Pallet Company’s Pallite paper pallets, winning favour with increasing numbers of exporters. Meanwhile, pallet pool operator CHEP has been named Supplier of The Year at the recent Premier Foods Awards for its new service offer, cutting truck miles and CO2 emissions.
As our Packaging feature shows, maximising packaging materials’ performance and limiting the environmental impact is a major concern for warehousing and logistics people. Automating the packaging process offers a means of improving efficiency, particularly in e-commerce and Kite Packaging is among the suppliers delivering cost savings and waste reductions. In our Warehouse IT feature we have news of WMS solutions from TouchPath and Snapfulfill, Auto-ID solutions from VITRONIC and a new asset management system from Red Ledge, offering open access to RFID readers across multiple sites.
Finally in our Quote Unquote section, Adrian Hopkins, Business Development Manager at Lumilow Lighting, reveals that when he isn’t selling lighting systems, he dreams of starting a band and having his name in lights. Would you like to appear in Quote Unquote? Please email me and we’ll arrange it for you.