12 Oct FIFO Racking and Design
If your warehouse handles food products or other perishable items, you know how important the First In First Out (FIFO) rule is when it comes to moving your inventory. Did you know that the right racking system can help streamline your FIFO operations? Utilizing FIFO racking and design can help eliminate the need for cumbersome manual inventory rotation, and make life easy for everyone in your warehouse.
The Basics of FIFO Racking and Design
With FIFO storage, your products are picked in order of their arrival in your warehouse. This method of organization means that the pallet that has been in the rack the longest will be the first one to be picked. FIFO pallet racking is the right choice for products with a limited shelf life, ending time-consuming manual product rotation.
In the graphic below, you see that the top section operates so that the pallets enter into one end on the left, but exit on the right. This way the first pallet added to the rack also becomes the first pallet removed (FIFO). On the other hand, the bottom section operates so that the pallets are both added and removed on the left, making it so that the first pallet added is also the last pallet to be accessed, or first-in-last-out (FILO).
FIFO Racking with a Pallet Flow Rack System
With a pallet flow rack, gravity will pull the next item down when you remove the one in front of it. This system works smoothly and efficiently, and you don’t even need electricity. Rollers and the force of gravity do all the work.
You may be wondering how to load a pallet flow rack so that it works for FIFO requirements. Ideally, these racking systems are open on both sides so that your employees can load new products on one end and unload older products from the opposite end.
A pallet flow rack system features specially-timed rollers set on a gentle incline. This placement allows the product to slide from the back loading aisle to the front picking aisle. Then, the next pallet slides into the picking position after the first pallet is unloaded.
Since no electricity is needed, you can save on energy bills and can continue to load and unload your racks even during a power outage.
Ideal Situations for FIFO Racking and Design
These FIFO systems are ideal in the following situations:
- Warehouses that need a high level of stock rotation, store perishable goods, or have a high turnover rate, including fresh and frozen foods, beverages, and medicines.
- Warehouses that have experienced spoiled, expired, or damaged goods
- Warehouses that need more efficient storage and space optimization due to fast inventory movement
Are you ready to set your warehouse up for success? Call Speedrack West for more information on how pallet flow racking can make your warehouse more efficient for your FIFO inventory.