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Westfalia Technologies, Inc. Completes High Density AS/RS Installation at Gehl Foods

Wednesday, February 15, 2012

With their continued business success, Gehl Foods Inc., of Germantown, WI, needed to find a way to meet their expanding order processing and warehouse storage needs within the confines of their existing 22’ high building. They selected Westfalia Technologies, Inc. to design, build and install a High Density Automated Storage & Retrieval Systems (AS/RS) with Savanna.NET® Warehouse Management System software (WMS) in the company’s 300,000 square foot warehouse. The AS/RS and WMS nearly tripled Gehl Foods storage space and provide significant operational savings in labor costs, energy and more.

In general, within the beverage industry the trend to lighter weight bottling and packaging has altered their warehouse’s storage capabilities. Where in the past 2 or possibly 3 pallets may have been stacked on each other on the floor, with the lighter weight packaging this isn’t feasible. The need for a new storage model developed, where cubic space is optimized for maximum storage within the existing warehouse. Westfalia’s high density AS/RS offers just such a model, whereby the benefits far outweigh the costs of automating an existing storage facility.

A new trend in renovating warehouses, automating existing facilities with a high density AS/RS maximizes available storage space at a fraction of the cost of building a new facility. The operational cost savings accrue over the life of the system, long after the payback period. Additionally, the accuracy and speed of order fulfillment means customers’ satisfaction increases. And while not easily quantifiable, these benefits are of great significance to every business.

As Dan Labell, President of Westfalia Technologies, Inc. explains, “In general, people used to think AS/RS always meant high rise, but we are finding that with our high density AS/RS in low-rise conventional automated buildings are a great solution. It fit Gehl’s needs perfectly.”

A key feature of Gehl’s automated warehousing system is the triple rail support of all pallets as they move through the entire system. Weak or broken pallets contribute to product damage and pallet tipping, and in some cases slave pallets are needed. In Westfalia’s automated warehousing systems though, this need not be a concern, as pallets of various types and conditions can be used as there is triple rails support throughout the entire system. At Gehl Foods, from the conveyors to the racks, to the satellite load carrying device and pallet flow lanes, all the pallets are supported with triple rails.

To learn more about the installation, contact Westfalia at 800-673-2522 or visit

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