Grocery retailer Albert Heijn’s has announced that it will soon be opening a new Home Shop Center (HSC), which has been developed in partnership with warehouse automation company Swisslog.
An AutoStore system has been used to automate processes in the HSC, where bins of peanut butter and tubes of toothpaste automatically roll along an automated network of rails to be deposited in blue shopping crates for delivery to customers’ homes.
According to Swisslog, the new HSC in Barendrecht will be able to handle 45,000 orders every week.
The company has said that soon approximately 300 robots will be deployed to ‘make work lighter for employees’. In the new HSC, human employees complete the orders, including adding fresh products
The automation specialist has remained involved after initial installation by providing technical support, with a dedicated Swisslog team working on-site to help detect and resolve malfunctions and enable both data analysis and necessary process improvements.
Marit van Egmond, CEO, Albert Heijn, said: “As the largest e-commerce player in supermarket country, Albert Heijn is committed to innovation, growth and sustainability. In doing so, we continuously look for the latest technologies to work smarter and more efficiently. I am proud of the new step we are taking in our HSC in Barendrecht.
“With this, we are tapping into yet another opportunity to continue to grow with e-commerce, while taking into account the tightness of the labour market.”
Robots and bin collect perishables, with the automated fulfilment centre also handling several other key logistical processes, including booking, storage, sorting and loading using QuickMove conveyors and the integration of SynQ software.
The construction of the next automated HSC for the grocery retailer has reportedly already started, with the site’s opening scheduled for mid-2024 in the Dutch city of Zwolle.
Swisslog will be exhibiting at Stand 404 at IntraLogisteX, where the latest developments in robotics and automated technologies for warehousing and logistics will be on show. will be held on 19-20 March 2024 at the NEC Birmingham and co-located with IntraLogisteX, the UK’s biggest warehousing show. Register to attend now!