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Shelf-Friendly Packaging: 5 Key Supply Chain Requirements (“The 5 Checks”) (NOTE: Applicable only to Vendors in Ambient, Liquor, Chilled & Frozen categories: Vendors in the Meat & Produce categories should liaise with their relevant Woolworths Business Manager)


Carton Design & Suitability

Is the product actually suitable for a SFP/SRP solution? (if unsure, discuss with your WOW Business Manager) Is the proposed carton suitable for the weight of the product within? Should there be a corresponding pack size (OM/VP) reduction to keep the pack safe and robust? If the trade unit contains glass or other hazardous contents, should it also be over-wrapped in plastic? Does the product add support to the SFP? If not, consider incorporating additional carton strength. If using a tray-and-shrink option, does the shrink-film properly enclose the product, keeping it fully intact?


Board Grade & Strength

Selecting an appropriately strong and robust board grade is critical. Remember that board with a greater percentage of longer, virgin fibre will generally be stronger than board with a high percentage of shorterfibre, recycled content. Watch for common cost-saving measures (eg, white-board outer with recycled inner lining) that can weaken the overall trade unit. What percentage of the outer board is weaker, recycled material? What about the inner lining of the carton? Is the board grade such that the cartons won’t bow/warp under their own weight (consider the cartons on the lowest layer of a full pallet).



Carefully consider the location of each perforation to avoid cutting through barcodes and other critical product/ vendor information. Carefully consider the depth and style of the guillotine cut: small variations in depth and style can significantly impact carton strength. Experience has shown that perforations running diagonally from one corner to another tend to dramatically compromise the pack. It is essential that transport tests be conducted to determine the optimal extent of perforations; where perforations are breaking open in transit, begin reducing the number or length or depth of perforations until the problem is resolved.


Barcoding & Identification

Remember that SFP/SRP options are subject to the same barcoding and identification requirements as nonSFP/non-SRP options: refer to the Trade Unit Quick Reference Guide for more detail on those requirements. Product must be easily identifiable in a DC environment, with all relevant product and vendor information visible (as per Quick Reference Guide). Barcodes must be easily scanned, presented on the required number of sides and at the correct magnification (as per Quick Reference Guide) Barcodes must not be obscured by tape or compromised by perforations etc. Position of barcodes must be planned in conjunction with position of perforations and/or tape (technicallycorrect positioning of the barcodes is less critical than avoiding them being compromised by tape or perforations.)

Enquiries: Contact Vendor Capability at or phone (02) 8885 3361 Doc Version 4: Created by Matt Lowe - January 12, 2012


Handling & Transportation

Will the carton withstand the impacts of an automated supply chain? These impacts may include conveyors, sortation trays, chutes, robotic picking, forklift transport etc.  SFP/SRP pallets should never be double-stacked, as they generally cannot withstand this pressure. Accordingly, all SFP/SRP pallets should be marked "Top Stack Only". Will the carton be safe and easy for staff to pick from a pallet and place on conveyors?  Can it be safely stacked with other products on a store pallet comprised of mixed items?  Has pallet stabilisation glue been adjusted to ensure the SFP/SRP is not compromised/destroyed when trying to separate cartons from the pallet? Remember: failed SF/SR packaging = interrupted store supply, potential out of stocks, lost sales and increased costs & rework for both sides of the business.

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