Be Cool: Refrigerated Picking and Packing for Multiple Applications

The bigger the grocery chain, the more complex the picking-and-packing applications — especially when it comes to refrigeration. During the generally inefficient and extremely costly final mile of the cold supply chain, refrigeration is often the stumbling block that keeps food-related retailers up at night. Redundant processes, expensive build outs and even more expensive transportation are all regularly employed to ensure perishables stay fresh.

Whether you’re working in a warehouse, store or micro-fulfillment center, and whether you’re prepping orders for click-and-connect, curbside pickup or delivery somewhere else, one thing does not change: Cold items need to be kept cold. But the moment a perishable is picked from its cooler, the cold chain is broken.

PackIt Fresh EcoFreeze™ Totes changes that equation, providing a mobile, refrigerated environment for up to 15 hours. The totes freeze overnight and maintain food-safe temperatures from cooler to curb, throughout fulfillment and distribution.

In an economy where demand is exceeding both supply and labor, streamlining the picking-and-packing process can mean the difference between accepting and rejecting orders — and profit. PackIt Fresh totes enable order and batch-order consolidation — reducing time and touch points and letting retailers get more orders out per hour, thereby satisfying customers and improving their bottom line.

PackIt Fresh freezable totes are with product pickers every step of the way. Workers pick and pack directly into the frozen tote, so the cold chain is never broken. They then bring the totes to any staging area — with no additional refrigeration needed, which means no expensive cooling systems or build-outs are needed either.

A worker or even a robot can pack items of any and every temperature into a PackIt Fresh frozen tote, where the entire order stays for the remainder of its journey. That may be to a staging area and the curb, that may be from a warehouse to a store, or in the case of a micro-fulfillment center or warehouse, that may mean it transfers to multiple locations’ staging areas and numerous trucks on its way to its final destination, be it store, locker or customer. All the while, the mobile refrigerated tote goes along for the ride, keeping products at food-safe temperatures. The totes are ideal for protecting precious perishables for hub-and-spoke models and long-haul routes with multiple stops, such as from a micro-fulfilment center, to a distribution center or store, to a happy customer.

At six to seven cents per use, PackIt Fresh also lets you scale refrigeration quickly, cheaply and easily. Seasonal surges no longer necessitate big investments in overhead that won’t be used the rest of the year. Planning for a fourth-of-July barbecue rush? You can build another walk-in freezer, rent some refrigerated trucks — or just put some more totes in your freezer. PackIt Fresh totes give retailers the ability to scale quickly — literally overnight — simply by freezing more totes. The totes collapse and store flat in compact and convenient racks, always standing by for your next surge in demand.

PackIt Fresh fully freezable totes change cold-chain picking and packing from an inefficient and expensive exercise to a productive, cost-effective process that streamlines fulfillment across applications.