Retailer’s Oranienburg distribution centre ensures in-full and on-time deliveries of fresh produce


Germany’s Rewe Group has partnered with intralogistics solutions specialist Cimcorp to implement a project for an automated fulfilment system for fruit and vegetables at its logistics centre in Oranienburg, approximately 50km north of Berlin.

Cimcorp provides reliable order picking for fresh products such as fruit and vegetables in plastic crates. The company’s automation expertise provides fast and efficient deliveries of fresh produce without picking errors or delays.

“Fruit and vegetables are an extremely important commodity group for Rewe customers, but characterised by heavy physical labour in the warehouses, which makes it difficult to recruit personnel,” said Lars Sibel, director SCM and Logistics at Rewe Markt.

“Cimcorp offers a unique solution to automate fruit and vegetable picking and alleviate physical labour for warehouse workers and thereby ensure the reliable delivery of fruit and vegetables to stores in the future as well.”

Labour availability continues to be a major challenge for warehouses and distribution centres around the world. The physical strain that comes with handling heavy items day-in-day-out in manual warehouse operations is a significant workplace hazard. This is where the automated solution from Cimcorp comes in to automate the handling of heavy items.

“Rewe expects a mature technical solution that facilitates the work of employees and offers customers consistently high delivery quality in terms of on-time-in-full deliveries,” said Torsten Prag, the retailer’s logistics manager for Region East.

Rewe said automation in the distribution centre is pivotal to meet the demands of its customers for order accuracy and freshness. The retailer is looking to increase automation, especially at its existing sites, to ensure rapid delivery in times of increasing labour challenges.

“We believe that the new fulfilment system will guarantee our customers high delivery quality, even in times of labour shortage,” said Prag. “However, we also want to examine what other opportunities arise as a result of faster order processing.”

With advances in technology and the increasing need for efficiency and productivity, automation has become a key driver of growth and innovation in intralogistics.

Riku Puska, sales manager, W&D Industry Sales for Cimcorp Group, commented: “In addition to increased productivity and efficiency, our fresh food solution offers a variety of other benefits, such as high levels of hygiene and fuller trucks. The open-floor design with no racking leads to easier cleaning and maintenance. Optimised truck loading results in less traffic and consequently reduces environmental impact.”

Cimcorp said its order picking solution will also help make Rewe’s supply chain and intralogistics greener and more sustainable. “The service agreement includes maintenance and will extend the lifetime of the system. In addition, a faster supply chain enables longer shelf-life, leading to less food waste,” the company said.

“As a pioneering innovator in the field of automation that has successfully accelerated the intralogistics of customers around the world, Cimcorp is committed to achieving high quality standards while minimising environmental impact.”