SC Freda is one of Lithuania’s oldest and largest furniture manufacturers, with a history dating back to 1880.
SC Freda is one of Lithuania's oldest and largest furniture
manufacturers, with a history dating back to 1880. The Kaunas-based
company produces wood furniture, notably for Swedish global
retailer IKEA, including cabinets, dressers and tables for
household use. SC Freda ships high volumes of furniture-typically
10,000 pallets of furniture per month, or 15 to 20 truckloads every
In August 2010, SC Freda implemented an RFID system designed to
increase the accuracy of furniture shipments, and to heighten the
efficiency of warehousing and truck loading. Freda management chose
Lithuanian technology integrator Autepra to provide the RFID
solution, which consists of installed RFID readers, passive EPC Gen
2 RFID tags, Nordic ID PL3000 mobile computers and truck- and
The new RFID process replaces the former paper-based system
whereby a sticker was manually affixed to finished products and
then taken off as products were loaded onto trucks. The old system
allowed management to keep track of quantities and types of
products shipped, but was time-consuming and prone to human
With the RFID system, finished products are transported from the
factory to a warehouse by conveyor and forklift, with one quick
stop for packaging. As goods are packaged, RFID tags are applied,
recording the type of furniture, time and date of manufacture. Each
time that a tag ID is generated and encoded, the data is added to
SC Freda's ERP system.
When a truck is loaded, the forklift operator fills orders based
on the list of all required items displayed on the screen of his
vehicle's on-board computer. As the forklift passes through the
RFID portal of the loading dock, an installed RFID reader compares
tag information against the order to be filled in Freda's ERP
system. The forklift computer is then updated, displaying loaded
items in green, or issues an alert if the wrong item is loaded. In
this way, mistakes are caught before the truck is full. And if
staff needs to locate specific pieces of furniture within the
warehouse, they make use of a Nordic ID PL3000 to find them.
With a reading range of 1.6 metres, fast scanning and ultra-long
battery life, the Nordic ID PL3000 makes locating products simple
and efficient. Once a truck is fully loaded, the forklift computer
sends the driver a confirmation, and the truck departs. When goods
are received at the other end, retail staff scans the barcodes
supplied as part of the RFID tags.
To date, Virginijus Brundza, Production Manager at SC Freda, is
quite pleased with results. "This RFID solution has provided us
with a new, cost-efficient tool to grow our business," says
Brundza. "We've achieved a completely new level of transparency and
automation in our manufacturing logistics."
Brundza found that the RFID system eliminates human error and
also enables administrators to track precisely when items are
produced and shipped out, giving them detailed knowledge of the
timing required for specific types of products to be manufactured.
This knowledge is particularly crucial for SC Freda because of the
high daily production volumes involved and the warehouse room
available. Space is limited, so just-in-time production is a
critical part of SC Freda's business model.