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Real‐time inbound decision support system for enhancing the performance of a food warehouse

S.I. Lao (Department of Industrial and Systems Engineering, The Hong Kong Polytechnic University, Hung Hom, Kowloon, Hong Kong)
K.L. Choy (Department of Industrial and Systems Engineering, The Hong Kong Polytechnic University, Hung Hom, Kowloon, Hong Kong)
G.T.S. Ho (Department of Industrial and Systems Engineering, The Hong Kong Polytechnic University, Hung Hom, Kowloon, Hong Kong)
Y.C. Tsim (Department of Industrial and Systems Engineering, The Hong Kong Polytechnic University, Hung Hom, Kowloon, Hong Kong)
C.K.H. Lee (Department of Industrial and Systems Engineering, The Hong Kong Polytechnic University, Hung Hom, Kowloon, Hong Kong)

Journal of Manufacturing Technology Management

ISSN: 1741-038X

Article publication date: 25 October 2011

Abstract

Purpose

With the increasing concerns about food management, attention is placed on the monitoring of different potential risk factors for food handling. Therefore, the purpose of this paper is to propose a system that helps facilitate and improve the quality of decision making, reduces the level of substandard goods, and facilitates data capturing and manipulation, to help a warehouses improve quality assurance in the inventory‐receiving process with the support of technology.

Design/methodology/approach

This system consists of three modules, which integrate the radio frequency identification (RFID) technology, case‐based reasoning (CBR), and fuzzy reasoning (FR) technique to help monitor food quality assurance activities. In the first module, the data collection module, raw warehouse and work station information are collected. In the second module, the data sorting module, the collected data are stored in a database. In this module, data are decoded, and the coding stored in the RFID tags are transformed into meaningful information. The last module is the decision‐making module, through which the operation guidelines and optimal storage conditions are determined.

Findings

To validate the feasibility of the proposed system, a case study was conducted in food manufacturing companies. A pilot run of the system revealed that the performance of the receiving operation assignment and food quality assurance activities improved significantly.

Originality/value

In summary, the major contribution of this paper is to develop an effective infrastructure for managing food‐receiving process and facilitating decision making in quality assurance. Integrating CBR and FR techniques to improve the quality of decision making on food inventories is an emerging idea. The system development roadmap demonstrates the way to future research opportunities for managing food inventories in the receiving operations and implementing artificial intelligent techniques in the logistics industry.

Keywords

Citation

Lao, S.I., Choy, K.L., Ho, G.T.S., Tsim, Y.C. and Lee, C.K.H. (2011), "Real‐time inbound decision support system for enhancing the performance of a food warehouse", Journal of Manufacturing Technology Management, Vol. 22 No. 8, pp. 1014-1031. https://doi.org/10.1108/17410381111177467

Publisher

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Emerald Group Publishing Limited

Copyright © 2011, Emerald Group Publishing Limited