ARA Food Corp
ARA Food Corp
About ARA Food Corp
Plantains are a food staple throughout the world’s tropical regions – in fact, cousins of the banana rank as the tenth most important staple food in the world. Plantains are also a staple at ARA Food Corp. This 40-year-old, family-owned company proudly calls itself “The Home of the Plantain Chip” and is the only US manufacturer of the extraordinary popular snack food. Operating out of its headquarters in Miami, ARA Foood Corp ships its savory snacks throughout the country, both under its own brand and private labeled for other companies.
Here’s how FoodBusiness ERP helped solve ARA Food Corp’s challenges
With Sage X3, ARA Food Corp has transformed its manufacturing accounting from an after-the-fact function to a real-time operation. “Previously, we spent the next day keying all the production data into our software,” explains De Varona. “Now, we have laptops on the shop floor and are capturing manufacturing data in real time—when and where it’s happening.”
Capturing manufacturing data on the shop floor not only saves data entry time and improves data accuracy, it also provides immediate visibility into the whole production cycle. “We’re out in front of operations now,” notes De Varona. “We can spend our time analyzing and improving plant functioning not simply collecting and entering the data.”
As is true for all US food manufacturers, ARA Food Corp must comply with food safety requirements covering
traceability, quality and preventative controls. It must account for and track all of its raw materials and finished goods throughout the production process and be fully recall ready. Sage X3 provides the bidirectional ingredient and product traceability, quality checks,
allergen management and expiration date tracking to ensure ARA Food Corp
remains in full compliance.
Another way Sage X3 is adding value to ARA Food Corp is through highly accurate and detailed cost tracking. “We’re now able to track scrap and waste in ways that weren’t feasible before,” says De Varona. “It’s been very helpful both in honing our own practices, and also to match scrap and waste back to the source of the plantains. We’ve identified suppliers from which we receive a higher amount of scrap and waste and work with them to help them improve their handling procedures.”
Unlike many other process manufacturers, ARA Food Corp is a make-to-order enterprise. “We maintain very little stock, as our ingredients come in fresh every day,” explains De Varona. “Our lead time from order to shipment is just a few days. We claim that we have the least number of days from production to store delivery in the market. The capabilities of Sage X3 help us achieve that speed and level of agility.
The short lead times can also complicate production scheduling. The company must have a clear understanding of seasonal trends in sales as well as seasonal production variations of its plantains. “We’re using Sage X3’s Business Intelligence capabilities to produce production planning reports that help us ensure we’re optimizing all our resources,” says De Varona.
“NexTec does an amazing job for us. We have nothing but good things to say about their skills, professionalism, responsiveness and level of support,” concludes De Varona. “They have guided us through the transition to Sage X3 and continue to positively contribute to the value we get out of the solution.”
Combining skilled configuration with professional programming, NexTec has tailored Sage X3 to meet the company’s unique operating procedures and workflows. “With NexTec’s help, we’re continuing to expand our use of the software, adding additional capabilities such as Production Scheduling, and discovering new efficiencies,” adds De Varona.
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