Automation specialist Dematic has been awarded a project with Americold to provide technology for two new Ahold Delhaize USA temperature-controlled warehouses.
Atlanta-based Dematic said this week that the integrated solution includes goods-in-receiving, automatic delayering, tray handling, sortation, automatic pallet building, dispatch trailer sequencing and ergonomic case picking. In mid-May, Ahold Delhaize announced a partnership with cold-storage provider Americold to build two automated frozen warehouses in Plainville, Conn., and Mountville, Pa., to serve supermarkets in the Northeast and Mid-Atlantic.
Dematic noted that the new facilities will be “true four-wall” automated solutions, with automated mixed-case palletizing systems to ensure cube optimization improvements. With more efficient packing, fewer trucks will be needed for delivery, and shelf-ready pallets will enable faster stocking of store shelves, the company said.
“The Dematic Center of Excellence for Grocery worked in true partnership with Americold to develop the right solution,” Bernard Biolchini, CEO of Dematic Americas, said in a statement. “These fully automated facilities, powered by Dematic iQ software, will provide immense operational flexibility, supporting an omnichannel experience and multichannel growth.”
Specifically, the compact mixed-case solution will feature a Dematic high-bay unit load AS/RS for pallets and the Dematic Multishuttle for case buffering and sequencing, managed and operated by Dematic software.
“To help us offer world-class service to our customers, we were seeking an automation partner to facilitate the future hyperconnected, enabled supply chain in retail fulfillment,” said David Stuver, executive vice president of supply chain solutions for Atlanta-based Americold. “With large-scale global capabilities and innovative automation solutions, Dematic is an ideal partner to help us create state-of-the-art facilities that will help Americold transform the supply chain.”
The Plainville warehouse will serve Ahold Delhaize USA’s Stop & Shop and Hannaford stores in the Northeast and New England, and the Mountville warehouse will serve the retailer’s Giant Food, The Giant Company and Food Lion chains in the Mid-Atlantic. Plans call for the new facilities to go into operation by the fourth quarter of 2022, and the projects will expand cold storage space by 24 million cubic feet, or 500,000 square feet.
In December, Ahold announced a three-year, $480 million plan to move to an integrated, self-distribution model. The project includes the construction of the two new frozen warehouses; the acquisition of three warehouses (two in York, Pa., and one in Chester, N.Y.) from C&S Wholesale Grocers; and new leases for a renovated warehouse in Manchester, Conn., and a C&S facility in Bethlehem, Pa.