It is a well-known problem among (industrial) bakers: lost bread crates. The question here is where these lost bread crates are located. Suppose a baker has purchased and possessed a thousand bread crates at the beginning of the year. These bread crates go back and forth and at the end of the year you count several hundreds fewer bread crates., then you are forced to buy new bread crates. These costs are unnecessary and loss that can be avoided if you have digital insight into your packaging flows. But first back to the problem: where do your bread crates disappear to?

Losing bread crates at the supermarket

As an industrial baker you often deliver to supermarkets, but you are not the only one who delivers products to supermarkets. During delivery, it may happen that there are several suppliers at the same supermarket. For the drivers, this can lead to confusion about which pile of bread crates they should take with them. In addition, it can occur that another supplier carries an incorrect amount of packaging, resulting in too few bread crates being returned to your own bakery.

Lost bread crates due to theft

Besides the fact that bread crates are taken by other organizations, they can also be stolen. In America, research has been done into lost crates and plastic pallets in the food industry. Stolen crates and carts are sold on to recycling companies and criminals make money from them. The loss is estimated at around $500 million a year in crates, pallets and other packaging. Publix had to replace two million dollars worth of plastic trays due to theft, among other things. One solution is to use RFID and GPS tracking in order to have an up-to-date overview of the returned bread crates and bread trays.

This way you don’t lose them anymore

Now that you know where the missing bread crates may be located, the question arises as to how you can prevent the bread crates, bread carts and dollies from disappearing. As mentioned above, it is possible to trace the bread crates by means of RFID. But it can be a lot of work to place an RFID tag on each bread crate and bread tray. It is important to collect a lot of data about your packaging, bread crates, trolleys and dollies. You can collect this data in different ways, but in a paper administration you can easily lose your way in the loose papers. If you want to have your bread crate registration in order, it is better to opt for a digital system. In this digital system you register the counts of your packaging online and (handwritten) errors are prevented. Read our article here: Paperless administration with TrackOnline.

Digital insight

Lost bread crates result in lost costs at the end of the year and when you don’t have enough bread crates in stock, the production process stops and you can’t transport the products to their destination. But guessing where your bread crates, dollies and trolleys are is a thing of the past if you opt for digital insight into your packaging flows. With TrackOnline you can easily register and manage your packaging. The online packaging registration platform is available both on your laptop and on your mobile or tablet. This gives you always and everywhere insight into your packaging flows and you know exactly how many bread crates are where!