Makers and suppliers of diesel engines, equipment and fuels embrace the global challenge of a cleaner environment by taking positive actions to use less energy and reduce emissions whilst also enabling the prosperity of peoples and countries around the world. Read more
Woolworths is said to become the first Australian supermarket to trial data embedded (or 2D) barcodes in stores from August.
The trial has the potential to help reduce the millions of tonnes of food waste generated in Australia each year, and will eliminate the risk of customers purchasing expired products.
In collaboration with Woolworths, Hilton Foods and Ingham’s will start placing 2D barcodes on fresh meat and poultry products sold via Woolworths supermarkets nationally.
Woolworths general manager of business enablement Richard Plunkett said: “We’re proud to be the first Australian supermarket to invest in this technology, and hope it can help us further reduce food waste.
“2D barcodes have immense potential and we’re excited to see how they will improve food safety, traceability and stock management.”
For the past 45 years retailers have used 1D barcodes that identify the object. Unlike traditional barcodes, 2D barcodes contain information about the product’s batch, supplier, use-by date, and serial numbers at the point of sale. The barcodes store data in two dimensions, rather than in just a series of black and white bars and look like checkerboards or a series of traditional barcodes stacked atop one another
Currently the product recall process requires all recalled products to be removed from supermarket shelves and disposed of. The information supplied by 2D barcodes will allow retailers to pinpoint the specific batch affected and trace it back through the production line, making it easier to identify the source of contamination and avoid sending unaffected products to landfill.
The ability to add expiry and best before dates to a product’s barcode will also help eliminate any risk of retailers selling out of date products to customers by removing the need for team members to manually label products. When scanned at the point of sale, customers will be alerted that the product is past its expiry date and the system won’t allow the purchase.
Beyond food safety and food waste, data embedded barcodes have the potential to improve the traceability of the farm-to-fork journey in the future. Ingham’s has partnered with Woolworths to investigate the potential of the new barcodes on its products.
Ingham’s head of sales – Woolworths Ed Alexander said: “Ingham’s is proud to be a pioneer in the 2D barcode initiative with Woolworths.
“Food safety and traceability are paramount to our business. Delivering quality products that incorporate cutting edge technology to enhance these elements and provide a range of benefits to consumers is a step we gladly embrace.
“We’re very excited to be partnering with Woolworths in the initial roll out of this technology and look forward to seeing the real-time and long-term benefits it will bring.”
GS1, which develops and maintains global standards for business communication, has been assisting Woolworths with its trial.
CEO and executive director of GS1 Australia Maria Palazzolo said: “Four decades on from inception, barcode scanning technology in Australia continues to evolve.
“The fresh food sector relies on accurate and complete data to track a product’s journey all the way from the farm to the supermarket shelves. It’s great to see Woolworths leading the way in bringing 2D barcodes to shoppers at point-of-sale.”
Successful trials in Germany, the UK and Thailand have shown material benefits for both customers and suppliers.
A number of other suppliers across health and beauty, freezer and long-life categories have introduced 2D barcodes in anticipation of future barcode adoption.
Woolworths will work with industry bodies and suppliers to develop a phased roll-out plan to help ensure more suppliers can adopt the new printing technologies.
Australia’s national truck laws must be substantially redrafted, the Australian Trucking Association said in response to the first issues paper of the Heavy Vehicle National Law (HVNL) review. Read more
Abhy Maharaj has joined NewCold as global chief commercial officer & chief operating officer as the company eyes growth in Australia, New Zealand and Asia. The appointment will be effective 1 July 2019. Read more
Toyota Australia, together with Toyota Material Handling Australia and Toyota Fleet Management, will be introducing a fleet of autonomous autopilot vehicles into its Altona warehouse from its operation start in 2020.
Manufactured in Sweden by Toyota Material Handling Europe, the fleet itself will consist of six Autopilot Tow Trucks (TAE500) and one Autopilot Reach Truck (RAE160), the flagship model when it comes to warehouse automation.
They will apply autopilot driverless technology to achieve mobility in conveyance, towing, lifting, and be able to autonomously place product throughout the warehouse and pick orders for customers.
All models in the range will also have the ability to be used in manual mode as conventional warehouse vehicles allowing complete flexibility in operations.
Built with the reliability and serviceability of their manual predecessors, the new hybrids will also include integrated navigation and leading safety systems.
The safety systems include scanners and obstacle detection devices which are designed to stop the vehicle and minimise the risk of a collision, ensuring protection for people, equipment, and infrastructure.
Fleet management, emergency-stop buttons, warning sounds, and lights will be standard across the range together with a blue LED warning light projected in front of the vehicle, to assist in noisy environments or when autopilot is approaching around a corner.
In addition to enhanced safety, Autopilot will also deliver energy efficiencies via Lithium-Ion battery technology, automatic charging, high vehicle utilisation, and low maintenance costs.
Toyota Australia vice president of sales and marketing Sean Hanley said the mobility company has a thorough understanding and appreciation of the importance of automation technology.
“Toyota Australia will continue to develop, progress, and employ these new ways of thinking whenever possible,” Mr Hanley said.
“We are extremely committed to delivering the highest level of reliability, performance, and productivity, and Autopilot ticks every one of these boxes,” he added.
NTC CEO Dr Gillian Miles.
The next Australian Government must fix the national truck laws – and save families more than $400 per year, the CEO of the Australian Trucking Association, Ben Maguire, said.
Mr Maguire was releasing a new report from Deloitte Access Economics about the economic benefits of improved regulation in the Australian trucking industry.
“In the eastern states and South Australia, trucking operators are regulated by the Heavy Vehicle National Law (HVNL), which determines the trucks we can use and the access permissions that are required,” Mr Maguire said.
“In 2011, it was predicted that the law would deliver up to $12.4 billion in economic benefits.
“This devastating independent report shows that the law has failed. It shows that the productivity of the transport, postal and warehousing sector has fallen every year since the law came into force in 2014.
“We need the next Australian Government to support measures to improve the industry’s productivity, including:
- Streamlining the issue of road access permits.
- Establishing an external, independent review process for access applications.
- Linking road funding to improving access for high productivity trucks.
“The benefits of these reforms would be considerable. According to the report, fixing the law would:
- Save the trucking industry $1.8 billion a year by 2050.
- Reduce vehicle operating costs by 3.7 per cent.
- Reduce the costs of Australian industries by $900 million a year.
- Save a typical Australian household more than $400 per year on their everyday household purchases.
“The next Australian Government must press on with the current review of the HVNL and the Productivity Commission review of the economic impact of the COAG national transport reforms.
“There needs to be substantial reform, not just tweaking or promises of future action. At the same time, however, the vital safety reforms that came into force in 2018 must be preserved,” Mr Maguire said.
The ATA commissioned the Deloitte Access Economics report to support its members in providing input to the Heavy Vehicle National Law and Productivity Commission reviews.
Read the Deloitte Access Economics report.
Australia Post has announced a four-year partnership with the Australian Trucking Association (ATA) with a focus on truck safety on the roads. Read more
Australian retail turnover rose 0.3 per cent in March 2019, seasonally adjusted, according to the latest Australian Bureau of Statistics (ABS) Retail Trade figures.
This follows a 0.9 per cent rise in February 2019.
“Cafes, restaurants and takeaway food services (1.4 per cent) and Food retailing (0.4 per cent) led the rises,” said Ben Faulkner, director of quarterly economy-wide surveys. “Strength in food prices has contributed to rises, especially in supermarkets and grocery stores. Clothing, footwear and personal accessory retailing (1.2 per cent) and Household goods retailing (0.2 per cent) also rose. The rises were partially offset by falls in Department stores (-1.5 per cent) and Other retailing (-0.4 per cent)”.
In seasonally adjusted terms, there were rises in Victoria (0.7 per cent), Queensland (0.6 per cent), New South Wales (0.2 per cent), Tasmania (0.4 per cent), South Australia (0.1 per cent), and the Northern Territory (0.7 per cent). The Australian Capital Territory was relatively unchanged (0.0 per cent) and Western Australia (-0.7 per cent) fell in seasonally adjusted terms in March 2019.
The trend estimate for Australian retail turnover rose 0.3 per cent in March 2019, following a rise of 0.3 per cent in February 2019. Compared to March 2018, the trend estimate rose 3.0 per cent.
Online retail turnover contributed 5.7 per cent to total retail turnover in original terms in March 2019. In March 2018 online retail turnover contributed 5.1 per cent to total retail.
For the March quarter 2019, there was a fall of 0.1 per cent in seasonally adjusted volume terms. This follows a relatively unchanged (0.0 per cent) result in the December quarter 2018. The quarterly fall in volumes was led by Household goods retailing (-0.6 per cent), and Department stores (-1.2 per cent). Cafes, restaurants and takeaway food services (1.0 per cent), Other retailing (0.3 per cent), Food retailing (0.1 per cent), and Clothing, footwear and personal accessory retailing (0.3 per cent) all rose in seasonally adjusted volume terms.