Scheduling production in the food sector

The food sector is often characterized by promotional peaks, seasonality, materials often characterized by short-term perishability. In this sector, therefore, more than ever, effective management of production planning and scheduling processes brings great benefits in terms of service level visibility, responsiveness to changes in demand, cost reduction and increased productivity


Food, a still poorly digitised sector

The food sector is still a poorly digitised sector, especially in the production planning department. This was particularly evident with the onset of the Covid-19 pandemic and many companies found it difficult to react to the sudden changes in the market and the surrounding ecosystem. Today, however, the food sector is also accelerating the process of digitizing its processes and in particular those with the highest added value: production planning and scheduling processes.


Production planning and scheduling in the food sector

The food sector is typically characterised by very short response times to customer demand and a production process divided into two steps: a first step relating to the production of the food, in the various states in which it can be found, and a second step relating to its packaging.

Packaging is often characterised by the fact that the same product subsequently gives rise to several SKUs (Stock Keeping Units) of finished product. Therefore, it is important to take this into account when creating the production plan. It may also be important to consider cleaning and equipment in the transition from one product to another. On the material management side, it is important to be able to synchronize purchases with the packaging plan, to avoid unnecessary stocks, while for raw materials it is advisable to have adequate buffer levels.

The response strategy is usually a mixture of MTS and MTO and this complicates the planning activity, due to the different order entry times and due to the fact that the production capacities are usually in common with the two strategies. To plan the MTS part you will find both cases where you use sales forecasts, and cases where you work with reordering points or safety stocks.


Benefits of production scheduling software in the food sector

The benefits of implementing appropriate software and tools for production planning and scheduling processes in the food sector are manifold. Among the main ones are:

  • Increased level of service to customers
  • Reduction of stocks of purchasing materials
  • Increased production efficiency
  • Effective and coordinated management of all production resources

In addition, an adequate production scheduling software allows you to eliminate the different Excel sheets that are typically used for these processes in addition to integrating the processes into the management system in use.


CyberPlan for scheduling production in the food sector

Cybertec’s CyberPlan solution in the food sector can cover the following processes:

  • Demand Planning;
  • Programming of finished capacity packaging lines;
  • Planning of production departments;
  • Material Management (Missing Control, Reminder, Procurement);
  • Medium Term Planning.

Compared to other solutions on the market, CyberPlan allows you to manage demand, capacity and materials within a single tool. In addition, the high configurability of the graphical interface and the speed of the solution make it possible to adapt the product around the specificities of the individual customer.


An interesting success story in the food industry

There are several successful cases of CyberPlan implementation in the food industry. One of these is the case of Morato Pane, an innovative food company that thanks to strategy and foresight has innovated and digitized its planning and scheduling department through CyberPlan.

Read the story HERE and contact us for more information!


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