Patates Dolbec – A successful transition to 4.0
Founded in 1967, Patates Dolbec Inc. is a Quebec-based family business that has grown from ten hectares of land, a horse and a plow to become a leader in its field. With 5% to 15% of its stock exported to Ontario and the United States, it is now the largest potato producer in Eastern Canada.
A major challenge
Dolbec was experiencing traceability and inventory difficulties as it dealt with multiple potato varieties and sizes. Thousands of products were identified by hand and keeping track of inventory was challenging. What’s more, the lack of information was leading to losses and multiple errors. An innovative technological solution was required.
A successful collaboration with Noovelia
Dolbec called on Noovelia to integrate the TRANSFO solution into its production chain. Perfectly adapted to the vegetable industry, this solution has optimized its operations management, from reception of potatoes to storage, along the production chain, input consumption, and the shipping of finished products. Now, all inventory (warehouses, refrigerators and production components) is managed in real time. What’s more, all company operations can now be tracked with the TRANSFO suite traceability modules.
Thanks to Noovelia, Dolbec has not only increased the efficiency of its processes and logistics, but its productivity as well. Armed with traceability data, company managers can now make better informed decisions and thus positively impact the company’s development.
However, there were still some operational issues that needed to be improved. The packaging center was very outdated. Production lacked flexibility and product quality was inconsistent. Furthermore, inventory was not of optimal quality. This was compounded by high staff turnover in non-value added positions. Noovelia proposed to implement the TRANSFO production and inventory management software suite.
Mobile devices, radio frequency identity (RFID) tags, an automated case packer and packaging lines, an automated refrigerated warehouse, as well as the implementation of production planning based on orders received versus inventory are some of the modules that have helped increase the company’s performance. Noovelia also implemented an automated warehousing solution to make production autonomous. With this solution, Dolbec was able to optimize inventory with the correct weights, create boxes automatically, perform a nightly physical inventory and set up an order-based stock rotation.
We went from zero computing to artificial intelligence, from bits of paper to mobile devices and screens. The whole team worked hard and didn’t resist change, even though sometimes it was tempting to go back to what we knew. Today, no one would go back! – Josée Petitclerc, Director of Marketing and Continuous Improvement, Patates Dolbec
In total, with the support of Noovelia, Dolbec has benefited from:
- Production flexibility: it is now possible to wash one variety of potato and pack three others at the same time
- Product consistency: each box and each batch have information on its quality and size
- Increased production and sales
- Significant reduction in employee turnover
- Motivated personnel in an environment that encourages continuous learning and improvement
- Decision making with the right information in real time
The integration of digital and physical in a single team greatly facilitates project implementation, communications and the quality of the result. The entire team is dedicated, takes everything to heart and listens. Noovelia offers fast, efficient service when we have a technical problem. We now know that change is for the better!
Do you think your company could benefit from Noovelia’s solutions as well? Contact us!
Visit the website of Patates Dolbec