Wiliot revolutionises cold chain operations with new reusable transport item solution


Wiliot (Caesarea, Israel), an Internet of Things pioneer whose IoT platform is enabling trillions of everyday “things” to gain intelligence and harness the power of the cloud, recently announced the Wiliot Reusable Transport Item (RTI) solution, built on the company’s IoT platform.

Using RTI, Israel’s largest retailer, Shufersal, becomes the first in the world to create an intelligent farm-to-store supply chain, continuously monitoring the location and temperature of produce to ensure freshness for its customers.

The new RTI solution features the company’s IoT Pixels that can durably attach to ordinary plastic crates and make them smart using Wiliot Cloud services. This allows businesses to continuously track not only their reusable shipping assets, but also the contents within. The IoT Pixels built into the RTI solution’s plastic crate are self-powered, postage stamp-sized computers that communicate wirelessly with the cloud and can sense a range of physical and environment conditions, such as temperature, location changes, as well as if the crate is full or empty.

When trillions of everyday things connect to the IoT—products, materials, shipping containers, and more—they transform how goods are made, distributed, sold, consumed, reused, and recycled. In the process, an Internet of Trillions (IoT2) allows businesses to reinvent their supply chains to be more sustainable and create a truly circular economy that maximises profit while protecting the planet.

“We are excited to be working with Shufersal, who have led the way in shining a light on the supply chain, from farm to store and beyond,” said Ohad Perry, Wiliot’s director responsible for supply chain solutions. “The Wiliot RTI solution puts the power of the Internet of Trillions into many more hands. By delivering intelligence in a turnkey solution, we’re helping many different businesses—from grocery stores to pharmaceutical companies—cut the size of their pallet pools while avoiding shortages and at the same time optimizing the shelf life and traceability of the contents of the crates. In a world where supply chains are under enormous stress, cloud intelligence is bringing visibility to crates and their contents to help mitigate many of the issues that are impacting successful operations.”

With the Wiliot RTI solution, businesses can monitor their containers – and the food, medicine, or other perishables inside – through proactive alerts of temperature thresholds. Such information helps companies maintain regulatory compliance as it brings food and pharmaceuticals safety to a level of accountability not possible before. Until now, temperature monitoring has been restricted to a subset of products in the supply chain, leaving gaps where quality issues can occur and the integrity of products can be compromised.

The ability to track shipping assets has an equally profound effect on operations. By achieving cost-effective visibility into each asset at each stage of the supply chain, businesses gain insight that can have a meaningful, measurable impact on capital savings. With the RTI solution, they can learn what percentage of intelligent containers are being stocked and used; exactly how and where they’re being used; and, equally important, whether they’re not being used at all.

“The Wiliot RTI solution enables a truly circular economy because now all reusable transport items can continuously communicate their status,” continued Perry. “Businesses can track inventory with precision, monitor shipping and delivery, preserve freshness, extend shelf life, and dramatically reduce waste.”

Shufersal, Israel’s largest retailer, is already embracing real-time visibility through adoption of Wiliot’s RTI solution, creating a fully transparent supply chain from farm to store and ensuring the timely delivery of high-quality produce, extending shelf life, and minimizing food waste. In Summer 2021, the two partners completed a successful pilot of the RTI solution and its ability to track the movement and condition of produce from the time it is picked to its placement in Shufersal stores around Israel.

“Being able to see in real time that produce shipments were kept at the right temperature and knowing exactly how many days passed from when it was picked to when it arrived in stores has been eye-opening,” said Zvika Fishheimer, Shufersal’s executive vice president. “Shufersal is committed to offering our customers the highest quality and our ability to trace produce through our supply chain means we and our farmers can take every step necessary to deliver the freshest food in the market.”

Based on the successful pilot, Shufersal is now rolling out the Wiliot RTI solution throughout the country, deploying more than one million RTIs and installing wireless communications infrastructure to support roughly 250 farmers and distributors and 300 Shufersal stores. The solution will even include wireless readers and mobile network gateways on farmers’ tractors to ensure supply chain visibility out at the very edge.

Caption: Using Wiliot’s new Reusable Transport Item (RTI) solution, Israel’s largest retailer becomes the first in the world to create an intelligent farm-to-store supply chain, continuously monitoring the location and temperature of produce to ensure freshness for its customer (photo: Wiliot)

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