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Data Analytics & Data Engineering

Boosting Efficiency and Profit in Fruit Packing with Data-Driven Solutions

By June 26, 2024No Comments

Why Businesses Need Data To Make Better Decisions

In the competitive world of fruit packing, efficiency is key to staying ahead. Packing houses face numerous challenges, from variable line changeover times to unplanned downtimes caused by equipment issues and inefficient labor scheduling. At Labs8, we specialize in identifying and addressing these challenges through data-driven solutions.

The Challenge: Addressing Planned and Unplanned Downtime to Optimize Productivity

Our client, a large apple and cherry packing house, experienced significant productivity issues. As they grew and supported more SKUs, planned and unplanned downtimes became more prevalent, affecting throughput across their operations. Previous attempts to address these issues focused on simple process bottlenecks without considering labor management and machine effectiveness.

The Solution:

Comprehensive Process Improvement and Data Infrastructure

To tackle these challenges, we provided Fractional CIO and process improvement support. We started with in-depth packing process workshops and reviews to identify pain points and root causes. This led to the development of a Downtime Drivers model, which informed our process improvement suggestions.

We then built a robust data infrastructure to track process changes and their effectiveness. By combining data from various sources, including labor scheduling, fruit sizing, quality control, and shipping, we could track both operational and financial metrics weekly. This comprehensive approach ensured that process enhancements were not only implemented but also monitored for their impact.

Ongoing Support and Improvements

Labs8 also provided ongoing fractional analytics support, acting as an extension of the client’s team. This included maintaining and improving reports as the executive team required, ensuring the solutions remained relevant and effective as the business evolved.

The Results: Significant Throughput Increase

The results were impressive. With better visibility into run performance and targeted process improvements, the client saw a 30% increase in monthly packing throughput. This improvement is projected to drive a top-line revenue increase of $6.8 million over the next year.

“Working with Labs8 has been transformative for our operations. Their expertise in process improvement and data management provided us with the tools and insights we needed to significantly increase our packing throughput. The visibility and control we now have over our operations are unparalleled.” — Operations Manager, Fruit Packing House.


Effective process improvement and data management are crucial for boosting productivity across various industries. At Labs8, we help clients achieve significant operational gains through tailored, data-driven solutions. Our success with a large fruit packing house demonstrates our approach’s transformative potential.

As Bernard Marr from Forbes notes, “Traditionally, the driving force behind decision-making has been the experience and instincts of business leaders. And unfortunately, that’s one of the primary reasons behind the unsettling statistic that 90% of small businesses and start-ups fail. Experience and instincts are valuable, of course, but research confirms that businesses that base decisions on data – not instincts or experience – are 19 times more likely to be profitable.”

From optimizing manufacturing workflows to enhancing financial reporting in agriculture, our expertise spans multiple sectors. Let Labs8 unlock your operations’ potential with our proven, data-driven strategies.

Image & Reference Source: Marr, Bernard. “Why Businesses Need Data To Make Better Decisions.” Forbes, October 11, 2021. Read the full article here.