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Support mechanization outbound logistics warehouse

April 06, 2016 7220 Views

H.J. Heinz was founded in Sharpsburg (Pittsburgh) Pennsylvania in 1869. Heinz food products enjoy #1 or #2 market share in more than 50 countries. Heinz’s top 15 power brands account for more than two-thirds of its annual sales ($ 12 mrd). Brands a.o.: ketchup, HP sauces, sandwich spread, Brinta, Venz, Honig. In 2013 Berkshire Hathaway (Warren Buffett) and 3G Capital bought Heinz.
In Elst (The Netherlands) Heinz produces around 200,000 tonnes kg of ketchup, HP sauce and salad cream per year for the European market.

Due to a railway track expansion, Heinz was forced to re-organize the inbound and outbound logistics on the site. A new fully mechanized high density pallet storage system was planned in their existing warehouse to execute the outbound logistics. Heinz invited Groenewout to support in the design and tendering of this mechanized system.

Several mechanized storage systems were reviewed varying from multi-deep shuttles systems (Egemin), i-cube configurations (Wics) to a cable driven multi-deep shuttle system (Actiw Oy). The Actiw system resulted in a valid business case and was therefore the preferred solution. IRR approx > 35%.


  • Good use of space: 3.000 pallets in a 50 x 50 x 8 m existing outbound warehouse to bridge the night shift production. No need for pallet storage anymore in containers: rental costs savings.
  • High flow capacity system: 120 pallets in and 180 pallets out at the same time. In: 24/7 non-stop production even during peak flows after production failures. Out: fast truck loading with minimum personnel in short period.