By Edson Perin
Dec 03, 2018 – Brazil’s Rafik Jeans, based in São Gabriel da Palha, has adopted radio frequency identification technology to monitor jeans production at its headquarters, as well as at other manufacturing units in São Paulo, Minas Gerais and Colatina. “Our products are marketed in 19 cities, including Minas Gerais, Bahia, Espírito Santo, Goiás and São Paulo,” says Felipe Pelissari, the company’s director.
Rafik Jeans moves 50,000 pieces a month. The firm has invested in RFID to gain agility and control of its goods. “We always work with high-quality products at very competitive prices,” Pelissari says, “but are always looking for the most current in the fashion world, thus taking our customers well beyond products.”
Prior to the RFID deployment, Pelissari says, the counting and separation processes were entirely manual and prone to errors. “With the implementation of RFID,” he explains, “we have had an excellent improvement in daily productivity, as well as drastically reducing counting errors and the separation of products.”
With RFID, the company has gained agility and accuracy in its counting and sorting of orders for stores, and has achieved a 50 percent improvement in efficiency. Such positive results are inspiring future investments, Pelissari says. “Portals are being installed in our stores to boost sales,” he states, “and also to improve the replacement process.”
Rafik Jeans hired iTag RFID Smart Labels to deploy the RFID solution at its factories. The gains, according to Pelissari, were most notable in the counting process, as the system has offered exact inventory control by model, size and color. There has also been a drastic reduction in human errors during the shipment of products to stores.
The experience of deploying RFID was very positive, Pelissari reports. “The challenge was to change labels in all units,” he says, “as this would take some time and work. However, we managed our stock inventory to identify products and make store-by-store replacements, until we finished all 19 units.”
The solution that Rafik Jeans deployed consists of an RFID portal installed to monitor the company’s logistical movements, both inbound and outbound. Rafik utilizes an enterprise resource planning (ERP) system from Virtual Age. According to Pelissari, “ITag gave us full support and is always ready for service. It was a great facility for us and undoubtedly sped up the entire process of change.”
Rafik Jeans uses a portal with an Acura Edge-50 reader and four antennas to manage products, cross-referencing information with customer requests and validating whether or not each product belongs in a particular order. The company currently uses iTag’s 95-50 tag with EM Microelectronic‘s EM4124 chip. The tags are not reusable, since the project provides traceability of the entire chain from the time a label is printed until it reaches the customer.
At the beginning of the deployment, the biggest challenge was to determine the configuration and arrangement of antennas so that any product placed inside the RFID portal could be read. “After analyzing the best configurations of the readers and the way the customer put the pieces in the bales,” explains Sérgio Gambim, iTag’s CEO, “we were able to align all the necessary points so that everything happened correctly.”
This article was published by RFID Journal.