Co-packing and Corrugate Disposal Client

co-packing and corrugate disposal conveyor system case study
Menasha Packaging case study header image


The client is a packaging company that provides a multitude of services for a variety of industries that redefines supply chains with innovative tote handling to creative container design and e-commerce fulfillment; the client offers specialized supply chain solutions for any packaging operation.

Century Conveyor Systems was selected by the client to engineer a corrugate takeaway system for a co-packing plant in New Jersey after identifying areas of improvement in its facility.


The client experienced increased co-packing demand and the number of empty cartons being produced created bottlenecks for the single overhead conveyor from the repacking tables. 

Associates tossed cartons onto the belt instead of properly inducting, often missing the conveyor causing safety concerns or having boxes get jammed in tough-to-reach areas. In addition, 2 additional separate co-packing lines in adjacent rooms did not outfeed to the same bailer, requiring manual labor to consolidate all the separate corrugate.



  • Streamline corrugate disposal process providing labor savings
  • Optimize repacking times for quicker turnaround
  • Connect disparate area lines and improve overall efficiency

System Specifications

  • Engineering and Integration: Century Conveyor Systems
  • Conveyor Equipment: Hytrol
  • Software and Controls: Lafayette Engineering and Century Conveyor Systems


The conveyor system proposed by Century consisted of 16 portable Hytrol PC incline conveyors discharging onto 5 Hytrol TH takeaway conveyor sections. In-between each incline conveyor are pack stations with roller tables and operator terminals. Each operator receives a pallet and corresponding corrugate magazine to be erected and packed with product. Empty cartons are placed on incline belts that extend above to the overhead conveyor gently transitioning them onto the take-away conveyor.

In a constant operation like this, a durable and stable-FPM system is a must. Century knew this and designed the system using Hytrol TH sections rated to a constant flow of 65 FPM. Utilizing a belt meant that even small pieces of paper and cardboard could be disposed of using the conveyor system.

The 5 TH takeaway conveyors are connected in series with the prior conveyor water falling onto the next conveyor. At the discharge of the conveyor, the empty cartons elevate onto a final section before being dropped into a bailer/compactor.

Adjacent rooms have a similar system setup, but outfeed into the main facility floor by waterfalling onto the bailer line. Consolidating these lines avoided deploying multiple bailers and designing all sections overhead and through partitioning walls kept the warehouse floor clear for forklift movement and pallet storage.


Enabling a combined single flow from all areas of the warehouse optimized packing operations, improved the efficiency, space utilization, and organization of the facility, and provided the blueprint for future co-packing areas in the warehouse.

“The system connected all our lines to feed into a single bailer, and the incline conveyors helped our staff efficiently dispose of boxes, decreasing co-packing times. The Hytrol equipment used has been incredibly reliable, and we’ve replicated the solution Century designed at other locations”, says the client’s Director of Engineering.

Even though the system is a relatively straightforward design, Century’s innovative engineering both made efficient use of facility space and enabled multiple co-packing lines to operate simultaneously.

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46 Eye-Opening Distribution Center Industry Statistics

46 distribution center stats 2022 and 2023 blog header

DC Operations

  • The average hourly cost of warehouse labor in 2022 is $14.97, an almost dollar increase from 2021. (source)
  • Management positions average a $52,700 salary a year. (source)
  • Transportation, Storage, and Distribution Managers account for an employment force of 144,640 in 2022 (source)
  • The average age of an employed distribution center manager is 45 years old (source)
  • B2C pick and pack fees remained the same rate as 2021, at $3.13 per item, while B2B fees increased to $4.33. (source)
  • 80% of the United States’ warehouses are still manually operated. (source)
  • The average throughput across all package types at 100% is 20.6175 product per hour. (source)
  • 27% reported the most congested area in a distribution center is the receiving dock, with 22% citing the shipping dock as the next area (source)
  • 75 is the average amount of employees in a DC for 2022. (source)
  • 10,371 is the average SKU count in a DC for 2022. (source)
  • 85.6% is the average DC space utilization rate (source)

DC Spending

  • In 2022, over 60% of distribution center operators will be investing in new equipment and modernization over the course of the next 12 months, while 57% say that they expect their spending to increase on material handling equipment over the next 2-3 years (source)
  • The equipment that distribution centers are buying? 49% are investing in racks and shelving, 48% in lift trucks, and 40% in packaging solutions. (source)
  • What software systems and management platforms are distribution centers spending on in 2023? 40% are looking for barcoding and automated data capture systems, while 24% are investing in ERP and WMS solutions respectively. (source)
  • North America was the largest region in the warehouse automation market in 2021. Asia-Pacific is expected to be the fastest-growing region in the forecast period. (source)
  • The mobile robots market was estimated at $2.5 billion in 2020 and is expected to grow to approximately 10 times than the current market by 2030. (source)
  • Over 55,000 AMRs were sold in 2020, tripled compared to sales in 2018. (source)
  • The average CAPEX for 2023 is projected to be $1.170 million (source)
  • 1 out of 4 DCs are planning to spend $500,000 or more on warehouse equipment and technology (source).
  • 52% of DCs have spent up to $250,000 on warehouse equipment in 2022 (source)

DC Real Estate

  • As of Q1 of this year, a 4.2% warehouse vacancy rate in the US is the current situation, with some areas as low as 1.6%. (source)
  • The average cost per square foot of warehouse space in 2022 was $7.96. (source)
  • Occupancy and rent costs accounted for over a fourth of total revenue (source)
  • By 2025, the number of warehouses worldwide is expected to reach nearly 180,000 by 2025 (source)
  • Prologis, the leading logistics real estate developer, reported a 97.7% average occupancy level in 2022 Q3 (source)

Top DC Concerns

  • Safety is a top issue of importance in DCs, with 84% reporting it as a top current issue. Next in line is labor availability, with 69% reporting it as a top issue. (source)
  • For business leaders, increasing efficiency within their supply chain is their number one priority, with 63% reporting, followed by 59% in reducing costs. (source)
  • 44% of COOs see worker shortages and turnover as a top issue (source)
  • In 2021, supply chain disruptions cost the US an average of $228 million. (source)
  • Digitizing and using new technology platforms in supply chains are an issue for business leaders. 48% cite budget constraints, followed by 30% of respondents having difficulty training employees to learn and utilize new systems (source)
  • 46% of small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs) have reported that supply chain delays are their biggest concern this peak holiday season (source)

eCommerce and DCs

  • eCommerce will grow and is expected to reach 22% of all retail sales worldwide in 2023, as compared to that 14.1% in 2019. (source)
  • 35% of respondents reported that eCommerce shipping (buy online, ship to customer from DC) accounts for the majority of their operations, while another 11% (up to almost half of the survey takers) say that eCommerce shipping will be the most common. (source)
  • 20.6% of all dollars spent on retail purchases came from online orders. (source)
  • The packaging market for eCommerce is expected to grow to $61.55 billion by 2026, up from $27.04 billion in 2020. (source)
  • The top eCommerce retailer – Amazon, grew 10.6% in Q3 2022. (source)
  • More than $1 in every $5 spent on retail purchases came from online orders in Q3 2022. (source)
  • Two-thirds of e-commerce companies are willing to invest more in automation due to increasing consumer expectations. (source)

Third-Party Logistics (3PL) Industry

  • Third-Party Logistics (3PL) companies in the US employ over 772,000 workers. (source)
  • By the end of 2028, the market size is expected to grow to that of $1993.72 billion, with Asia being the leading region (source)
  • 71% of 3PLs experienced new customer acquisition in 2021 as a primary driver of its growth (source).
  • 34% of 3PLs report owning 100,000 – 250,000 sq. ft. of distribution center space. (source)
  • There are over 30,759 3PL businesses currently operating in the US. (source)
  • 43% of 3PLs are looking to reduce costs and increase profitability on a per-order basis (source)
  • 80% of 3PLs cite capacity as a top challenge, with 70% citing hiring qualified labor as a secondary challenge (source)
  • The most common reason why shippers end a partnership with a 3PL is because of poor customer service with 64% saying that good service is more important than fair pricing (source).

Century Project News: November 2022

Century Project News Header Image Nov 2022
November 2022 Century News Post

NJ Distribution Center Cross-docking System

NEW JERSEY, (November 1, 2022) – Century Conveyor Systems Inc. has recently completed the installation of a conveyor sortation system for a leading third-party logistics company.

The new system will receive inbound cartons and polybags to be processed throughout the facility for shipment, utilizing cutting-edge sortation and material handling systems for efficient distribution. Century engineered the automation system with a dual Hytrol shoe sorter for packages, a Eurosort dual split-tray sorter for polybags and parcels, along with FMH and Stewart Glapat loading door extendables. Controls and logic were engineered by LEI, Century’s parent company.

The new automation solution will provide the 3PL company with quick and efficient cross-docking operations for both polybags and cartons. The high rate of distribution the systems can achieve was a key integration factor, and choosing durable units meant stability during continuous periods of increased throughput.

EuroSort split-tray sorter

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Hytrol dual shoe sorter

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Controls, spiral, extendables, and more

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About Century Conveyor Systems Inc.

Century Conveyor Systems is a full-service material handling integrator, engineering effective automation solution designs for post-production distribution processes. Starting as a conveyor service provider, Century has grown over the past 40+ years into an engineering firm skilled in implementing all types of automation. Century’s goal is to increase output, lower labor costs, and optimize the stability and efficiency of warehouse operations.