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Juggling Inventory for Fresh Food Industry
By Enabliser Wentzel
Running any business can be a juggling exercise to manage the right quantities at the right time – not too much and not running out. In the fresh food industry, it’s even harder with limited shelf life when the product can’t be used after a specific date and keeping track of where ingredients and finished products come from. This juggling combines the difficulties of normal inventory management with the exacting standards of the food industry.
With the right software solution, you have a tool that turns a juggling exercise into a piece of cake. The solution for many of our customers in the fresh food business is Sage ERP X3. Sage ERP X3 is a full ERP system with all the functionality to assist with ordering the correct quantities at the right time, to be delivered in time to your customer, and with traceability from the time the inventory was received.
Sage ERP X3 allows you to plan/ forecast your sales by site and product. On running the MRP process, the system will calculate the quantities to be ordered and make Purchase Order Suggestions, which can be transferred to a Purchase Order. With advanced setup available, the MRP process can calculate the inventory needs based on stock levels, safety stock, EOQ, firm Purchase Orders and firm Sales Orders. This is smart and saves a bundle of time and cost in many ways, our customers tell us.
The Purchase Order is created and based on the supplier and site - delivery lead times and pricing are considered as well. The pricelist setup is flexible and can be created on your needs, with quantity breaks and discounts and different units of measure. The stock can be received in a docking location and put away later - at this point lots will be created with Use by Date and Expiry dates. This means you always know where items have been, where they are, and where they are going next. You have great control.
As well as making inventory planning an easy process, the sales process is easy too - starting with a sales quote that easily converts to a sales order. There is no need to enter it again. It’s efficient. Stock can be allocated at this stage - taking into consideration Use by Date of the lots and when the customer expects delivery. If you have a picking process, Barcode scanning can simplify this, ready to ship the order. Labels are produced with lot numbers, use by dates and expiry dates for traceability. Delivery notes can be printed to go with the delivery and the Sales Invoices generated later.
For customers in fresh food, using Sage ERP X3 brings many benefits – from more accurate inventory and lower costs – inventory and labour, to flexibility to adjust to the market with costing and pricing, making a juggling exercise a piece of cake.