Friday, April 20, 2007

Murray’s Chicken Plant Goes Hi-Tec

Long been the big name in free range poultry products, Murrays Chicken of Fallsburg , NY is growing fast. At an average of 45,000 birds a day, and a thriving live bird business, Murray’s could no longer live by its old paper system. They needed to automate. Dean Koplik, VP of Operations of Murrays Chicken called in Progressive Software Solutions to help. Progressive has been in the scale and software integration business for many years and had already been supporting Murray’s scale and label systems for years. Koplik knew of some of the systems that Progressive offered but was delighted to hear of the extent to which Progressive could help.
Progressive installed the Provision Processing System a meat processing software and hardware system( built especially for meat processors. For Koplik, the benefits are numerous.

With the current climate in the meat processing world, first and foremost is the ease of lot tracking. All the scales in the Murray’s plant (up to 10 at any time) are programmed to automatically generate lot numbers along with their barcode labels. Scales are also tied into a SQL server over an ethernet network and tied to the SQL database for automatic data capture, product look up and inventory . The scale labels are later used in shipping for the shipping module. Thankfully, Murray’s has not had to do a recall yet, but they rest assured that at the touch of a button they can track lots to customers and dates within seconds.

Orders were once taken by hand, written down and walked back to production. At over 100 orders a day, Koplik’s shoes were getting worn out! Now Koplik and 4 others are taking orders over the phone. Orders can contain future ship date, notes about how to pack items, view on hand, how to deliver etc… After entering the orders on their networked desktop PCs, orders are immediately delivered to the warehouse using a networked document printer. The warehouse fulfills orders using the scale labels previously generated and a wireless barcode scanner. Koplik is saving a fortune in shoe repairs.

Shipping Tickets are produced as a result of boxes scanned. Tickets contain Skid numbers, case weights, order number, customer shipping information, and much more. What’s great for Koplik is that every shipping ticket goes into a Quickbooks cue for billing and is also removed from inventory. At the click of a button, all invoices are complete. This alone is the greatest time and money saver due to previous handwriting and accuracy issues. Perception is reality to Murray’s clients and having a hand written report with marker on boxes was keeping Murray’s from closing some major accounts. Now with the printed shipping reports and the UCC/EAN 128 bar coded labels, Murray’s sales staff feel confident they can fulfill the needs of the most demanding clients and has brought in some significant business.

Until now inventory was a visual process. Shrinkage became a problem as well. With the Provision Processing System, Murray’s has a “to the second”, handle on what is produced and what is getting shipped to who and most importantly what is not getting shipped.

Using the SQL reporting tool included with SQL server 2005, Brian Kessler (IT Manager) is able to create on screen reports, for all aspects of the business such as Inventory levels, production time studies, lot reporting, re-works and much more.

Murray’s is now using Progressive in many aspects of their business including custom printed labels and inserts as well as plant automation. Murray’ s continues to grow and Koplik maintains that he will bring Progressive and the Provision Processing System along with him.

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