Rapida ProductionApp for inventory management and consumables tracking via smartphone

Tried and tested at Schur Pack Germany

Blanket change on a Rapida 145: the blanket is registered by app on the printing unit on which it is used and its service life can be precisely tracked and planned
Blanket change on a Rapida 145: the blanket is registered by app on the printing unit on which it is used and its service life can be precisely tracked and planned

Schur Pack Germany installed three automated medium and large-format Rapida presses in 2015, when it built a completely new packaging plant in Gallin. Since the end of last year the company has been a pilot user of one of the Rapida LiveApps. The ProductionApp takes over the complete warehouse management in the company as well as the batch tracking required for the printing of food packaging. You can see here for other warehouses around you which are experts in storing, packing and shipping. At the production facility, the inks were tracked, a whole range of additional products such as varnishes, dampening solution additives, rubber coatings, oil, filter mats, rake lips, Vaseline and coating defoamers were added. The same goes for plate developers in prepress.

Readily accepted among press operators

The ProductionApp is simple and easy to use. Schur Pack’s non-smartphone users in the 50+ age group can also use the app comfortably. As soon as the smartphone (that went for a service at prophonerepairs.com — iPhone repair service) is held over an NFC tag in the warehouse or at the press, the camera scans the code or corresponding field for entries. All data is recorded as it is delivered, which has greatly increased acceptance. The press crew also sees the app as a great help as it is no longer necessary to write down the products used.

Schur Pack Germany currently has 121 NFC tags in use. Around 80 tags are at the presses and around 40 are in the warehouse. In addition to these products, the company expects a great deal more to be integrated into the process.

The same tags are used for some products. The best example of this are the company’s 3,000 inks that are managed on a single day of storage. It is possible to track them as the name of the product is also read along with the batch number.

Use of commercially available smartphones

Schur Pack Germany currently uses five Samsung S6 with Qi charging technology for warehouse management and batch tracking. One at each press, one in the warehouse and one in the department managers office. In future, a mobile phone will be stationed at each storage location.

Michael Verch, head of printing at Schur Pack Germany, says, “€300 per phone is cheaper than any barcode scanner.” He aims to purchase a simple Tablet PC for around €200 to have a permanent overview of inventory with all live data available at his desk.

Automated information

The advantages of the ProductionApp can clearly be seen in the inventory statistics. The manufacturer’s eMail address for each product can be stored by Schur Pack Germany. When a minimum stock level is reached, not only does the central purchasing department receive the information, but the supplier can also receive advance information on what needs to be delivered in the near future.

Pre- and post-tracking of consumables

The shelf life and usability of each article can be determined. Automatic pre- and post-batch tracking is also possible. Its more than just a simple assignment of the consumables used for the respective print jobs.

Especially when printing food packaging, the ProductionApp allows exact information on the inks, coatings, printing aids and other consumables used to be retrieved at the touch of a button. This provides reassurance for manufacturers and retailers as well as for consumers.

In 2024, we are looking at full recovery and growth-led investment in Indian printing

Indian Printer and Publisher founded in 1979 is the oldest B2B trade publication in the multi-platform and multi-channel IPPGroup. It created the category of privately owned B2B print magazines in the country. And by its diversification in packaging, (Packaging South Asia), food processing and packaging (IndiFoodBev) and health and medical supply chain and packaging (HealthTekPak), and its community activities in training, research, and conferences (Ipp Services, Training and Research) the organization continues to create platforms that demonstrate the need for quality information, data, technology insights and events.

India is a large and tough terrain and while its book publishing and commercial printing industry have recovered and are increasingly embracing digital print, the Indian newspaper industry continues to recover its credibility and circulation. The signage industry is also recovering and new technologies and audiences such as digital 3D additive printing, digital textiles, and industrial printing are coming onto our pages. Diversification is a fact of life for our readers and like them, we will also have to adapt with agility to keep up with their business and technical information needs.

India is one of the fastest growing economies in nominal and real terms – in a region poised for the highest change in year to year expenditure in printing equipment and consumables. Our 2024 media kit is ready, and it is the right time to take stock – to emphasize your visibility and relevance to your customers and turn potential markets into conversations.

– Naresh Khanna

Subscribe Now


Please enter your comment!
Please enter your name here