Industries

Food & Beverage

Food Processing and PackagingAPC Integration provides integrated, real-time software for use in the Fresh Food processing industry. APCI have installed many systems covering Citrus fruit, Apples and Hay Exports.

Areas covered include:

  • Product Receiving with automatic weight recording
  • Quality Assurance
  • Automatically gathering Production Data
  • Stock Management
  • Product (Carton, Pallet etc) Labeling
  • Order Processing
  • Dispatch
  • Integration with MES / Financial Systems
  • Web access for Suppliers (eg Growers) and Customers

Key Benefits

Operational Cost reduction through:

  • Faster bin weighing, letting and management
  • Automatic, reliable data collection from Grading and weighing equipment
  • Automatic packing lane diversion.
  • Pallet / Bin stock management including integration with Order to Invoicing process
  • Efficient use of staff information input. Required user input kept to minimum with no requirement for data re-entry.
  • Time consuming entry and processing of paper forms eliminated. Fewer errors.
  • Automatic carton barcoding and labeling.
  • Reduced frequency of manual stock takes
  • Data validation by the system as it is collected enabling anomalies and issues to be resolved at the source giving confidence in the system and reduced frustration. Data entry errors are all but eliminated.
  • Product traceability provided including relevant QA information.
  • Accurate and real-time Bin and Finished Goods stock management - reducing the need for manual stock takes
  • Carton stock management including automatic stock replenishment improves delivery times
  • Line Control / Optimisation. When the system is integrated into the line's electrical control system (PLC) we can optimize the line speed, sense line failures and shut down to avoid flooding, optimize wax and fungicide application. Automatically schedule Line start & stop times.

Administration cost reduction through:

  • Empty Bin Tracking - real time reporting on bin status & location.
  • Real time stock control - current stock status reports to help generate run lists.
  • Re-keying of data is eliminated
  • Data is collected where it is generated reducing errors and delays
  • Production / stock status reports available in real time
  • Automatic transfer of data to accounting package
  • Improved fruit traceability through integration with the line controller for accurate timing between tipping and grading.

Improved business sales through:

  • Real time transparency into the operation of the business enabling an accurate understanding of stock.
  • Improved Customer Service through real-time received and packed stock availability information.

Improved Grower Service / Feedback:

  • Because information is available real time growers can be kept informed about the status of their deliveries, grading statistics.
  • Accurate, detailed grower returns information provided quickly.

 Description of typical system

A Production monitoring system for the Citrus Processing industry typically includes the following system modules:

  • Fruit Receival
  • Bin Management - letting and tracking
  • Received Fruit Stock
  • Tipping
  • Grading
  • Grower Packout Data
  • Graded Fruit Stock 
  • Packing and Labeling
  • Carton Management
  • Pallet Management
  • Packed Stock
  • Dispatch
  • Sales Order Entry and Order Picking
  • Grower Management including Pool price calculations and payments
  • QA on Receival, Grading and Packing; reports for traceability requirements
  • Interfacing to MES or Financial system
  • Web access for growers to their Delivery and Packout data
  • Range of flexible reports

The system collects data from the fruit packing process as it happens. The aim is always to have a paperless system that sources data at the point of activity. Data is collected via computer terminals, barcode scanners or Radio Frequency tag readers, and custom serial and network communications.

Typically data is collected from:

  • Receival, including Bin Letting, automatic weighing and docket / bin card printing.
  • Bin Tipping, including tracking the last of a growers fruit along the line and finishing the grower batch on the grader(s)
  • Automatic data collection from Graders (Blemish / Sizer), eg Colour Vision, Compac, Elips, PSF, FOMESA, Autoline, Sunlkist
  • Pattern Packing Machines, Bagging and Manual Packing
  • Carton Labelling and Palletising Systems
  • Sales order entry and Dispatch

Integration:

The system integrates all production and packing information including the line electrical control system allowing automatic line management and speed control. It also integrates well into existing software including accounting and grower payment systems. It can manage multiple pack-houses and multiple warehouses.

The system is built from a modular set of software components developed and updated over many years and is customised for each site. In this way the system provides exactly the level of functionality required and can be integrated into existing systems.

The system may be expanded to include things such as grower harvest scheduling, pool management, grower payments and order to invoice systems.

Clients & Projects

Lochert Brothers Pty Ltd
Production monitoring system - using Windows Server and thin client network

P. Costi & Sons
Production monitoring, work in progress stock management, carton stock management, carton automatic print and apply labelling.

Yandilla Park Limited
Packing shed production monitoring system for two grading lines.

River Fresh International
Packing shed production monitoring system including AQIS compliant Quality Assurance system at recieval and production. Also finished goods pallet management system for full traceability

J T Johnsons
Packing  Export Hay Manufacturing Execution System from contract negotiation on farm to loading into containers. The system also features a remote weighbridge operated by drivers for recieval and dispatch

Golden Circle
Packing shed production monitoring system. Automatic barcode scanning of tipped fruit

Lenswood Cold Stores
Apple Sorting and Packing Line production monitoring system including fully automatic print and apply carton labelling system.