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UNFI, Symbotic To Implement Warehouse Automation Systems


Providence, Rhode Island-based United Natural Foods and Symbotic have entered into a commercial agreement to implement Symbotic’s A.I.-powered robotics and software automation in five of UNFI’s distribution centers over the next four years. Under the agreement, UNFI also has an option to put Symbotic’s warehouse automation systems in additional distribution centers.

Symbotic’s end-to-end automation system, with robotic case pick capabilities, is designed to enable UNFI to transform its distribution centers to enhance capabilities and efficiency, improve order accuracy for its customers, increase storage capacity within its facilities and facilitate planned future growth. The Symbotic System will be able to fulfill customer-specific orders, which is expected to create operating efficiencies at the customer store level while creating a safer environment for associates.

“We’re pleased to introduce Symbotic systems into our distribution network, which we believe will benefit our customers, suppliers and associates,” said Mark Bushway, UNFI’s chief supply chain officer. “We currently have automation in a number of our distribution centers, but we believe the Symbotic System will improve the accuracy, efficiency, quality and speed of our supply chain and help take our operations to a new level.”

“We are excited to welcome UNFI as a customer and look forward to working with them to transform their distribution centers,” said Michael J. Loparco, CEO of Symbotic. “Additionally, we believe this agreement further validates the broad applicability of the Symbotic A.I.-powered robotics and software platform.”

UNFI is a grocery wholesaler delivering a wide variety of fresh, branded and owned brand products to more than 30,000 locations throughout North America, including natural product superstores, independent retailers, conventional supermarket chains, e-commerce providers and food service customers.

UNFI also provides a broad range of value-added services and segmented marketing expertise, including proprietary technology, data, market insights and shelf management to help customers and suppliers build their businesses and brands. For more information, visit unfi.com.

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