Pulling RFID Out of the Freezer

Atlas Cold Storage deploys radio frequency identification in harsh environment, sees results for customers

Atlas Cold Storage deploys radio frequency identification in harsh environment, sees results for customers

Toronto, Ontario — January 10, 2006 — Ship2Save said this week it has provided Atlas Cold Storage with a radio frequency identification (RFID) system specifically developed to enable the Cold Storage Third Party Logistics' provider to offer RFID services to its customers across North America.

The first implementation at Atlas' Sikeston, Mo., facility was driven by a request from one of Atlas' largest ice cream customers to service Wal-Mart's Texas distribution centers. Atlas is currently working with another customer on a second RFID implementation in the Midwest and has more planned for the future as demand develops.

Hugh Cope, chief information officer at Atlas Cold Storage, said, Atlas recognizes that this is an important emerging technology that many of our customers are going to need to supply products to many of the largest retailers in North America. Applying RFID technology in a harsh environment such as our frozen warehouses has its challenges, and we are pleased that we can now offer this critical value added service to our customers.

According to Sam Falsafi, director of RFID Business Development & Strategy at Ship2Save, bringing RFID into the cold storage environment was a challenging task. Extreme temperature variations, humidity, condensation and an abundance of other factors provided for daunting tasks, he said. But we're pleased to say that the cooperative work between the team at Atlas [Cold Storage] and our engineers has lead to an extremely successful RFID project.

Falsafi added that it is interesting to see the ripple effect of the mass-merchandiser mandates, and how it has enabled innovative companies such as Atlas to provide RFID services. It is also interesting to see how this ripple is enabling more and more manufacturers to adopt RFID, he said.

The continued implementation of RFID Systems across the supply chain is facilitating the use of more open-looped systems, according to Falsafi. These systems allow cooperation and data sharing amongst trading partners providing supply chain visibility and improvements in supply chain processes.

— A recent independent study revealed that Wal-Mart customers are finding the items they wanted in stock more often due to the retailer's use of RFID technologies when compared to control stores. Read more in "Wal-Mart Achieving Improved On-shelf Availability with RFID, Study Finds" on SDCExec.com.