The Dunbia Group, headquartered in Dungannon, Northern Ireland, recently completed installation of an entire Emydex iWAMS solution at their Retail plant in Preston, England. Dunbia (Preston) is a modern processing facility comprising a beef and lamb abattoir and de-boning facility, and a separate retail packing operation.
The facility has the capacity to process up to 1,500 cattle, 10,000 lambs and 600 tonnes of retail packed product per week. Dunbia originally installed the iWAMS Warehouse Management System module in their Preston plant two and a half years ago in September 2007.
This recent upgrade project covered the entire facility end-to-end from stock intake, to production, packing, yields & costings, warehousing and dispatch, and incorporated Sales Order and Purchase order processing.
“This latest project took just eight weeks to complete from start to finish”, said Jay Adams, IT Service Delivery Manager in Dunbia (Preston).
“The project ran relatively smoothly when you consider the facility never had a transactional system running before, meaning we had to train all our staff over the two months before the system went live. Emydex also provided two weeks on-site support post go-live, which was a great reassurance in case anything went wrong, which it didn’t.”
“In terms of benefits, the system gave Dunbia (Preston) immediate control over systems and reporting. Using the Emydex Data Management System, back office staff had instantaneous access to far more accurate reporting of efficiencies, yields and giveaways and operator performance” Said Adams.
The Emydex software system roll-out coincided with a parallel roll-out of new plant hardware including Marel Terminals, and Avery Scales. This included integration to high-value processing lines incorporating fully automated weighing and box level labelling.
“Emydex’s ‘open architecture’ means it can integrate with any third party hardware, and as all the integration protocols had been written before, integrating was a breeze. Hardware independence is one of Emydex’s key selling points”, said Adams. “We’re not tied down to a narrow choice of hardware; we can pick and choose the hardware configuration that best suits our requirements”.
Another key selling point with Emydex is the flexibility offered within the software itself.
“We rolled out the standard flavour of the iWAMS Retail Solution initially, but over time we have made changes to the system in order to suit the specific ways we work in Dunbia (Preston), and the individual demands of our customers. Its fine to talk about “group standards”, but at the end of the day every facility will have differing requirements whether it’s down to the physical layout of the plant that doesn’t facilitate a ‘standard’ transaction flow, or down to the individual reporting requirements of a MD. So too, every customer or supermarket chain will have different requirements, so your systems have to have the ability to adapt to deliver these changes easily and quickly. That’s what we have now with Emydex.”
Dunbia is one of Europe's leading suppliers of beef and lamb products for the national and international retail, commercial and foodservice markets. Formerly known as Dungannon Meats, the group is headquartered in Granville, near Dungannon, Northern Ireland. Dunbia operates from ten sites in Northern Ireland, England, Scotland, Wales and the Republic of Ireland.. Out of the total workforce of nearly 3000, some 800 are employed in Northern Ireland. Dunbia supply international markets and UK supermarket chains, including Sainsbury's, Asda, Iceland and The Co-operative. The firm also includes the former Rose County Foods site in Sawley, Lancashire, and the former Oriel Jones and Son facility in Llanybydder, Wales.