March 14, 2018

Metro invests in Witron's OPM technology

Canadian grocer Metro Inc. implements logistics technology into a -28 degrees Celsius (-18 degrees Fahrenheit) warehouse.

By DC Velocity Staff

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Metro Inc., a food retailer in Canada with over C$12 billion in annual sales and over 65,000 employees, will rely on the storage and picking systems from Parkstein, Germany-based general contractor Witron Logistik + Informatik GmbH, which will be implemented in its new distribution center in Toronto, Canada. Starting in 2021, the distribution center will supply more than 250 stores in the province of Ontario from an assortment of 3,600 different frozen products.

"This investment will enable Metro to continue its growth and expansion in the Ontario market", said Eric La Flèche, president and CEO of Metro, in a prepared statement. "With a new and modernized supply chain infrastructure, we will be even more responsive to the needs of our customers".

The automated logistics systems OPM (order picking machinery)— including its nine automated palletizers called COMs (case order machines) machines—and the CPS (car picking system) can pick up to 112,700 cases plus more than 100 full pallets for shipment to Metro stores on a peak day—error-free and in a store-friendly manner, the company says. The distribution center also includes a five-aisle high bay warehouse with 12,500 pallet locations and an AS/RS with 118,800 tray locations. Innovative conveyor system elements as well as 18 high-speed stacker cranes—developed and manufactured by Witron's subsidiary, FAS, ensure maximum availability even at an ambient temperature of -28 degrees Celsius (-18 Fahrenheit).

"The new distribution centre will feature state-of-the-art technology which will enhance our efficiency as well as allow us to improve service to our store network and customers," Carmen Fortino, executive vice president and Metro Ontario division head, said in a release.

As a general contractor, Witron is responsible for the entire design and realization of all IT, control engineering, and mechanical components. In addition, system service and maintenance also belong to the performance scope of the logistics expert from Parkstein, who provides service and technical support by means of an OnSite team.

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