Automation boosts contract logistics efficiency for chocolate and confectionery giant

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    11 December 2016



Dubai, United Arab Emirates – GAC Dubai has further boosted the efficiency, hygiene and accuracy of its handling of sweet treats for the world’s largest chocolate and confectionery manufacturer with the addition of an automated bagging machine at one of its Contract Logistics food grade clean rooms in Jebel Ali Free Zone.

It represents even greater commitment to delivering optimum Value Added Services (VAS) in repackaging mini-chocolate bars received in bulk, and customising them for the local and regional retail markets. The automated line is capable of producing up-to one million sales every month, and capacity spikes can be managed with support from manual packing operations.

“Investment in automation is allowing us to drive a very efficient business model. Automated quality checking is driving a very accurate, high quality product,” says Abdul Hameed, Value Added Services Manager - Contract Logistics.

“Many Fast Moving Consumer Goods (FMCG) products sold in the Middle East originate from Europe, Asia and the United States. To meet the stringent labeling requirements set by the local regulators, manufacturers must customise their products before they can enter the regional market. GAC Dubai’s VAS function provides a tailored last-mile solution which is very highly effective and much more flexible than source factory customisation. In highly competitive retail environments, GAC offers a wide range of promotion activities allowing our customers to strengthen their marketing efforts and successfully differentiate themselves from their competitors.”

Handling on average 7.5m units per month with a permanent headcount of 200 staff, GAC Dubai’s Value Added Services provide a range of support solutions including: ensuring statutory compliance with date and batch-code inkjet printing and Arabic labelling; marketing support through promotional packing, sleeve wrapping, shrink wrapping and repackaging; quality checking; and price & security tagging.

The new automated bagging machine is the latest in a series of investments to boost Value Added Services offered by the GAC Dubai contract logistics team, including the dedicated co-packing facility in the Jebel Ali Free Zone opened in May 2016.

GAC pioneered contract logistics services in the Middle East in 1993 when it opened the region’s first distribution centre in Dubai. Today, the 103,000sqm GAC Logistics Park in the Free Zone is still one of the largest and most advanced in the region comprising of 54,000sqm of warehousing space and specialising in Food & Beverage and FMCG cargo.