Sixty percent of those CPGs polled report increasing machinery purchases specifically for e-commerce.
“We are doing proof of principle (PoP) now on our line to determine potential machinery needs for an e-commerce line; waiting for ROI determinations,” said one CPG Packaging Manager.”
“We are investigating separating end of line for e-commerce to divert and pull products for customized orders,” says one Packaging Manager from a large consumer products company.”
Machinery needed includes (see chart for percentages): secondary packaging, warehouse handling equipment, marking and coding, primary packaging and vison/sensors.
CPGs are looking for improvements in machinery that focus on getting the product to market faster, including:
- Faster machine start-ups to run multiple sizes due to SKU proliferation.
- Perform faster changeover in order to manufacture a wider variety of products sizes
- Intuitive maintenance indicators that deliver a computer prompt for easier, built in troubleshooting, self-diagnostics, and measuring of machine performance
- Accommodate shorter production runs to add more personalization.
- More automation is needed as there are fewer qualified people to hire.
- Simplicity in machine operations due to a limited labor force that is not highly skilled.
The study makes it clear that CPGs are not just looking buy a machine, they seek a deeper partnership with their OEMs to navigate the challenges of e-commerce.
“We look to the OEM to assist with the selection of the machines’ interface and controls,” said a Project Engineer with a nutritionals company.
“We look for partners that are more innovative and provide a quality machine,” remarked a Sr. Packaging Engineer for a major CPG.
For more information on the impact of e-commerce on CPGs, 3PLs and packaging OEMs, download the FREE Executive Summary below. PMMI members can access entire 56-page report here.
Make plans to visit PACK EXPO Las Vegas, September 23-25, for machinery and materials to tackle your e-commerce and omnichannel challenges.