Web services for scale management quickly deliver new functions to the sales floor and clever scale management tools ensure a sustained reduction in total operating costs. Lutz Nungesser, Business Area Manager Retail Region Central Europe at METTLER TOLEDO explains how this works.
Mr. Nungesser, what trends do you see in food retail as it pertains to scales in fresh food departments and at service counters?
The competition in food retail is duked out in the fresh food sector. The staging of fresh foods will continue to gain in importance and quality; that’s why end customers can look forward to more convenience and a better shopping experience. Another trend we are watching mostly pertains to scale management. I believe it opens up doors to new opportunities in food retail: web services deliver new functions to the sales floor and clever scale management tools ensure a sustained reduction in total operating costs.
How does METTLER TOLEDO respond to these trends with its products and services?
When we talk about the shopping experience, I would like to emphasize our modular FreshWay Vario touchscreen scales. The functional components of these scales such as the printer, control unit or weighing plates can be set up individually without the need to modify the counters – exactly what the food retail sector needs to have as much leeway as possible to customize its service counters. We will introduce the flat edition with its extra flat weighing plate at EuroShop 2017. Also new at EuroShop: We address the issue of barrier-free and accessible self-service weighing in the fresh produce section by offering a self-service scale that assists customers as needed. We look forward to the reactions of the trade fair visitors.
The METTLER TOLEDO RetailSuite, abbreviated MTRS, offers food retail a modular software suite facilitating scale management. MTRS is the tool of choice to quickly and cost-effectively deliver scale software upgrades, new configurations of touchscreen layouts or digital signage contents to individual stores for example. Based on uniform weighing software used in all connected equipment, the MTRS can garner considerable simplifications and cost reductions in data and software management. Maintaining consistent and thus easy to adapt software versions on all devices is no longer a pipe dream. The chance to quickly enable new functions as needed via web services liberates the food retail industry from scale software release cycles and offers previously unknown autonomies. In other words, web services not only introduce new players but are also able to dramatically speed up time-to-market as it pertains to the development and implementation of new functions. What’s more, unlike apps, web services offer greater freedom in design since they also effortlessly enable the development of custom solutions by the client’s in-house technology department.
What key innovation will METTLER TOLEDO have in store for us at EuroShop 2017?
I have already mentioned some of the innovations. But perhaps the biggest surprise for METTLER TOLEDO trade fair regulars is the 880 Sprinter that’s parked at our booth. This is the vehicle we are going to use after the trade fair to embark on a tour around the DACH region (Germany, Austria, and Switzerland) to introduce our latest portfolio for the backroom to the food retail sector. The 880 Auto Packer for automated weighing, wrapping, and labeling in the backroom will be the star of this tour. It is one of the most compact devices in its class and comes with a preventive service and maintenance concept that ensures the highest level of uptime to operators. We know that uptime is enormously important to our customers. During service cases, we maintain uptime thanks to the smart integration of remote service options with an easy parts exchange with our FreshWay series of scales. In the case of the automated 880 Auto Packer, preventive service schedules and measures provide the key to optimizing uptime.