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Be Thankful This Thanksgiving for Manufacturing Technology

Nov. 26, 2019
Produce and track food and beverage data with the right technology.

When you sit down this Thanksgiving to enjoy a feast with your loved ones, there will be many food options available to those who come together to break bread.

Grandma’s pumpkin pie might be the best pie you’ve ever eaten. Uncle Carl’s green bean casserole is, well, edible. You make a mean stuffing.

This smorgasbord always shows up right on time, every year, without fail. It’s rolled out to the family to be dug into after an afternoon spent watching football and national parades.

Most of us take this food for granted. We don’t give the logistics behind getting the food from farm to table a second thought.

But those of us in manufacturing who work in the food and beverage industry know how much planning and work goes into ensuring food gets to where it needs to be on time for the holidays.

Chocolate producers, for instance, start planning their cacao procurement at least one year ahead to ensure the chocolate arrives in stores fresh for Valentine’s Day. The producer, using Plex software, applies statistical models to trends to project their needs, plus anticipated sales, further out than their sales team can forecast.

There is a lot of data that needs to be crunched and materials to be tracked, but it’s made easier with the right technology. We should be thankful we have tools at our disposal that will help to ensure the food gets to where it needs to go, on time, unspoiled, and ready to be consumed at the height of its freshness.


Eliminating the old way of doing things is imperative if you hope to become a modern manufacturing operation. Using a planning tool like DemandCaster will put you on the right path.

With DemandCaster, data-driven insight allows you to move with certainty and speed, providing rich visualizations of the data that bring everything into focus. This means staying ahead of the unexpected and making the right decisions every time. As your company grows, DemandCaster becomes a solution that’s comprehensive and ready to expand with you.

Lot Management

With the Lot Management module within the Plex Inventory Management System, suppliers can control inventory based on “lots” – groups of inventory containers considered effectively identical for all end-use purposes.

This means you can ensure lot-specific information -- like Best By, Use By, and Sell By dates -- is grouped together based on this specific information. Lot management is also available to capture and report traceability among multiple lots and other data in the system.

Shipping and Receiving

Shipping and receiving is a vital part of supply chain management. However, when issues like improper labeling and food recalls arise, the entire process can become incredibly challenging.

But using a shipping and receiving module, within a management inventory system, can streamline the process and make everything run more smoothly. Auto invoicing, customer shipping, and customer returns are handled with ease, ensuring hiccups that once interrupted your day are just that: a hiccup.

Inventory Management

It’s important to have oversight into every detail of your inventory. This allows you to maintain strict control of your lots, perform cycle counts, and minimize material handling that uses directed put-away so storage location is optimized.

With Plex Inventory Management, you have oversight into where your inventory is at all times, in real-time. It gives you error-proof, precise tracking of raw materials, which is vital when it comes to ensuring foodstuffs are kept fresh and ready to go. It’s also highly customizable, so you can capture the data you want to capture and make it work for you.


If worrying about your manufacturing operation this Thanksgiving is going to give you heartburn, it might be a sign you need to invest in a management system specifically designed for the food and beverage industry.

After all, there’s no point in ensuring the supply chain is managed properly if you don’t get to enjoy the fruits of the process.

Download this free white paper to discover how food and beverage manufacturers are gaining more visibility and control while driving down costs with cloud-based ERP.

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