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folder Case studies, Cold stores

Körber builds first automated warehouse on the island of Cebu for BBLC

PHILIPPINES: Global supply chain solutions expert increases sustainability for food cold storage warehousing and distribution specialist by making the most out of space in the new cooled facility.  

BigBlue Logistics Corporation (BBLC) is working with Körber on a deep-freeze warehouse to reduce energy consumption and increase productivity and maintain its rapid growth in the Philippines.

BBLC was facing several challenges. This includes a lack of labor, given cold storage’s challenging conditions from a health and safety perspective. Additionally, the company wanted an environmentally friendly solution. One that allowed them to expand operations within their limited land availability, along with reducing high energy usage from heat loss in their manual freezer warehouse.

BBLC needed a partner with extensive automation and supply chain expertise and found this in Körber. Designing a concept consisting of a -28°C automated high-bay warehouse with five 30-meter-tall automated storage and retrieval machines (ASRS/stacker crane), K?rber optimizes space by allowing higher storage density per square meter. Furthermore, the stacker cranes contain energy recuperation units, reducing energy consumption by up to 35%. This, combined with the new warehouse’s smaller footprint, reduces heat loss, meaning less energy is required to cool the building. The system is controlled by Körber’s warehouse control system (WCS) which interfaces with the customer’s SAP enterprise resource planning (ERP) system.

The ASRS will also provide a safer environment for staff and increase efficiency. It removes the need for manual storing and put away of goods in the sub-zero warehouse. Plus, it improves operational efficiency by maintaining a consistent temperature by operating in a closed space without human interference. Lastly, it allows BigBlue to effectively cope with labor challenges, as the automatic operation requires fewer staff. As a result, BigBlue can expand to the next level through technology.

Nikolaus Stumpf, project manager at BigBlue comments: “We were impressed by the strong commitment from all levels within Körber throughout the entire project. The fact that the Körber team was also able to understand and address our questions and concerns promptly with profound technical and operational knowledge made us confident that they are the right partner for us.”

“Today’s supply chains are complex, even more so for chilled goods. Stricter regulatory requirements, higher customer demands all while striving to keep energy consumption low are just a few of the challenges our customers have to deal with. With the use of our automated system and warehouse control software, BigBlue is actively tackling them, setting the course for further growth with Körber,” says Win Thian Chai, chief executive of Automation Asia, Körber business area supply chain.

The automated warehouse is expected to take up operations in Q2 2022.

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