Our certified lab professionals collaborated with Harvest Hill’s packaging manager to create a protocol for testing Unit Load Optimization and Product Damage Reduction, determining multifactorial test protocols and aligning objectives and expectations.
We conducted testing on 18 Juicy Juice unit loads to generate data for dimensional analysis and unit load optimization. To discover the causes of product damage, we also performed tests that simulated materials handling (incline impact), warehouse stacking (compression) and transport (vibration).
Using CHEP’s shared and reusable pallet, the tests were conducted on unit loads comprised of products in bottles, pouches and boxes. The products had different sizes, packaging, case dimensions and unit load configurations. In addition, we subjected the unit loads to horizontal compression analysis to determine if Harvest Hill could use horizontal clamp trucks instead of forklifts to transport product within their warehouse.
The incline impact testing and vibration testing revealed which unit loads were susceptible to damage during materials handling and transport. Horizontal compression testing demonstrated that clamp trucks could not be used for most of the unit loads.
Our product damage reduction experts, using unit load configuration software, identified superior product configurations that could be used to optimize their unit loads. In addition, our analysis of their unit load dimensions identified a few had indeed deviated from company specifications.
After all unit loads were subjected to testing and analysis, our lab professionals shared our recommendations with Harvest Hill so the company could implement changes to its transportation, shipping and handling procedures.
As a result, the company was able to achieve greater efficiency, reduce product damage and generate supply chain cost-savings. In addition, Harvest Hill was able to show its customers that they were in full compliance with shipping and handling specifications.