Subscribe to our free, weekly email newsletter!


MHIA: AS/RS Industry Group releases Fall 2010 Quarterly Report

The report asserts that quality control can be maintained closer to the point of consumption than ever before with today's AS/RS solutions.
By Modern Materials Handling Staff
September 01, 2010

The Automated Storage and Retrieval Systems (AS/RS) Industry Group of Material Handling Industry of America (MHIA) has released its Fall 2010 Quarterly Report titled “AS/RS: A Key Link in the Cold Chain.”  The report asserts that quality control can be maintained closer to the point of consumption than ever before with today’s AS/RS solutions.

An AS/RS, whether a vertical or horizontal carousel system or a fixed-aisle crane-based system, plays a key role in ensuring the quality and safety of consumer products.  It does that by controlling the storage environment and maintaining a reliable data trail to document quality and ensure safety.

Although these systems are applied in many industries, two in particular call for critical strengths when it comes to environmental control in the cold chain: Pharmaceutical/medical supplies and food/grocery.  “We need strict monitoring devices that both create a hard copy log and also communicate electronically to various facilities if something happens,” said Hanel Storage Systems’ Brian Cohen, chair of MHIA’s AS/RS Industry Group. “This can document that for whatever lot number or case number, temperature was maintained throughout a product’s entire stay in the system.”

State or Federal regulations often require such validation. But there are also times when supply chain stakeholders require documentation of who had access to these products and when. With bar coded personnel ID tags used as access keys, such accountability is established. In addition to temperature and access control, these systems can control humidity and ensure protection from contamination in clean room environments.
An AS/RS can serve as one of the cold chain’s strongest links by making up for variability in the weakest link. These points are when product spends time outside a temperature controlled space. The AS/RS owner’s goal is to minimize the effects of those times by getting products into the system as quickly as possible. That requires the ability to ensure system capacity at a moment’s notice while slotting those products by date, and sequencing them by customer.

With interfaces to supply chain execution and enterprise resource planning systems, an AS/RS can be a window to product flow and environmental data from the manufacturing line to the store shelf. As the needs for environmental control and accountability grow in many industries, AS/RS users in the pharma and food chains will show how it’s done.

Click here to read “AS/RS: A Key Link in the Cold Chain.”

Subscribe to Modern Materials Handling magazine

Subscribe today. It's FREE!
Find out what the world’s most innovative companies are doing to improve productivity in their plants and distribution centers.
Start your FREE subscription today!

Recent Entries

Almost all companies today are aware of their labor or material costs... but what about energy consumption? It all comes down to having the energy data needed to determine what actions you must take to improve. The payoff is worth it, as insight into energy data allows you to make more valuable, relevant operating decisions.

Global uncertainty threatens resurgent business confidence, growth prospects.

Winners join association leadership amid record membership.

New vice president of sales and vice president of marketing have a combined 28 years of experience with the company.

97% say the return process is very important to their future intentions to shop with a retailer.

Article Topics

· MHI · Automated Storage · MHIA · All topics

About the Author

Bob Heaney is a seasoned professional with over 25 years of distinguished leadership experience in research, analysis, and advisory roles in Supply Chain Engineering. Heaney’s coverage area within Aberdeen includes various elements of Supply Chain Execution (Transportation Management, Warehouse Management, Distributed Order Management and Supply Chain Visibility). Contact Bob Heaney


© Copyright 2013 Peerless Media LLC, a division of EH Publishing, Inc • 111 Speen Street, Ste 200, Framingham, MA 01701 USA