German food retailer Netto Marken-Discount, boasting the largest range of groceries in the discount segment, is automating its logistics for fresh produce with Cimcorp, making Netto the very first German retailer to use this system.
In automating its distribution facility at Thiendorf, Germany, Netto Marken-Discount relies on cooperation with Cimcorp, a producer of turnkey, automated logistics systems. Netto plans to implement other similar facilities, but Thiendorf is the first project jointly realized with Cimcorp.
Netto continually invests in modernizing its nationwide logistics network in Germany. Articles for the 4,270 Netto branches are stored, picked and delivered from the current total of 20 logistics centers established throughout Germany, focusing primarily on fresh produce.
Reliable automation ensures freshness
“Getting fresh fruit and vegetables from producers to the branches is an absolute race against the clock. In many cases, only a few hours pass between receipt at our logistics centers and delivery to our stores. In Cimcorp, we have found a service provider to supply us with a solution for fully automated order picking of ergonomically packed fruit and vegetable pallets, a solution that meets the requirements of our branches – fast, reliably and cost-effectively,“ says Christina Stylianou, Head of Corporate Communications at Netto Marken-Discount.
If successfully commissioned, the retail organization plans to implement additional automated logistics systems at other storage locations. Cimcorp has already deployed automated facilities in the fruit and vegetable sector in other European countries.
Kai Tuomisaari, Vice President of Sales at Cimcorp, says “Germany has been a significant market area for us for over 30 years, but this is our first project in grocery retail. We’re proud to enter this fiercely competitive market to automate the fresh produce logistics of one of Netto’s distribution facilities. We want to exceed all expectations and justify the immense trust and confidence placed in us.”
Consumer requirements pose challenges for grocery logistics
Quality and freshness are two key criteria for consumers when shopping for groceries. Considering that there is typically an assortment of 5,000 fresh-produce articles, speed and precision in order picking is of decisive importance for product quality. Accordingly, a facility of this kind must meet the requirements of simple and easy handling, short throughput times and functional safety.
Netto continually works on optimizing its logistics, thus continuing its sustainability strategy, such as achieving a reduction in CO2 emissions thanks to optimally packed delivery vehicles, resulting in a reduction in the number of transport runs required.