A first for SEC Storage: the design and installation of a high-density, pallet shuttle system for Natures Way Foods Ltd new dry stores packaging facility based in Chichester, Sussex...
Natures Way Foods began in 1994, when the Langmead brothers set up a small bagged salad operation. Their big idea was to combine the freshest lettuce with the latest food manufacturing technology. Since then, they’ve grown by expanding their customer base whilst moving into new fresh convenient categories and product areas.
Natures Way Foods Ltd
Installation of a high-density, pallet shuttle system at Natures Way Foods new dry stores packaging facility...
Design and installation of a high-density pallet shuttle system
Natures Way Foods invited SEC Storage alongside their materials handling partner Forkway Group Ltd to design a racking solution for their new dry packaging stores facility based in Chichester, Sussex. A VNA operation was initially considered, however due to the costs of the materials handling equipment it was found that a shuttle system would be more suitable.
In a shuttle system, the handling of goods occurs within the racking channels and is carried out using a remote controlled pallet shuttle. A standard reach forklift truck is used to handle pallets outside of the rack, and is also used to transfer the shuttle system from one channel to another. This setup removes the need for forklifts to access the channel directly.
The pallets are placed on a pallet shuttle - a battery powered pallet cart which carries the pallets into the rack. The shuttles run off of rechargeable batteries and also contain diagnosis software for troubleshooting issues - particularly effective for controlling load overhang, with the system working on either a FIFO (first-in-last-out) or LIFO (last-in-first-out) basis.
See the system in action below...
Maximum storage density!
The shuttle structure we designed and installed at Natures Way Foods comprises of 21 no. lanes with the majority of the lanes housing a maximum capacity of 5 no. pallets in both depth and height. The overall capacity of the installation now stands at 555 no. pallets total, in turn, maximising storage density whilst making full use of the facilities cubic footprint.
Due to the nature of the warehouse environment and the types of products stored within it, SEC also made provisions to attach the pallet racking and shuttle structure to the floor with chemical anchor bolts, suitable for food safe environments. These chemical bolts are ideal for installations in wet or damp conditions and are vibration resistant, even at temperatures below 0° - perfect for the dry stores environment.
SEC also designed and installed multiple bays of adjustable pallet racking. A standardised solution which was used for additional packaging storage. Our project at Natures Way Foods represents a first for SEC Storage in the form of a pallet shuttle system, and showcases our ability to explore a variety of options in order to find the best solutions for our clients warehouse facilities and material handling operations.
“In order to keep up with the exceptional levels of growth that we have experienced over the last few years we were in need of a solution that would allow for the highest
density of storage.
We invited SEC Storage to propose a system that would maximise the capacity of our dry stores packaging facility, whilst ensuring that we were also able to increase the productivity levels of our warehouse operations team moving forward.
The resulting solution from SEC Storage has allowed us to optimise our operation in three key ways: reducing operational costs; increasing the productivity levels of our
warehouse team, and maximising the overall warehouse footprint. All essential goals of the project.”
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