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Pinguin Foods sign-up for Aerohive solution

Pinguin logo

Pinguin specialises in producing freshly harvested vegetables and fruit while preserving its original quality. Pinguin offers a wide range of high quality vegetables, fruits and convenience products for retail, foodservice and industry. Their production sites are strategically located in the most fertile agricultural areas of Europe (Belgium, France, United Kingdom, Hungary and Poland). Pinguin delivers more than 400,000 tons of finished products every year and has presence in more than 90 countries around the world. Over the years, Pinguin has evolved from a simple green grower to a leading international company. Since 1965 the group has been active in the industrial production of frozen vegetables in Belgium. 30 years later, Pinguin started up a production facility in the South of France. In the years that followed, the acquisitions happened in rapid succession. Today Pinguin is next to Noliko, one of the 2 independent divisions of Greenyard Foods, an important alliance of agro-food companies. Currently, Pinguin has about 1,400 employees working in 13 production units spread across Europe.

Pinguin Foods were constructing a new 10,000 pallet cold store at its UK base. The cost for the new cold store and additional development works was more than £13m. Pinguin uses the IT program SAP to follow the production process and to know the exact quantity and quality of different products that are in stock at each of the production sites. The SAP functions by EAN codes that enable the user to easily reserve a certain quantity or quality of products for individual customer requirements. The new cold store needed a wireless solution to support its computer data terminals used within the cold store. The wireless access points needed to be high-performing, cost effective, rugged and able to withstand temperatures of -25°C within a watertight chassis.

As an IT service provider to Pinguin Foods for over 15 years, MNI Services were invited to tender for the work in 2013. MNIS worked with Pinguin Foods’ IT department to fully understand the requirements and specifications required. MNIS searched the market for wireless hardware and solutions which met the requirements and standards. A draft proposal was presented to Pinguin with several options which performed a number of functions:

  • Documented the installation and operational requirements, coverage of signal in relation to pallet location, while taking into account that the pallets goods would be frozen acting as a brick wall
  • Highlighted the benefits of using cloud technology to configure, manage and future proof the access points
  • Proposed recommendations of which solution best suited their requirements and how this could integrate with existing systems and be grown upon in the future as a full wireless solution throughout the business
  • Proposed a series of recommendations, which compromised a range of short and long term solutions including additional training and enhancements, hardware upgrades and preparation of a plan to implement and eventual replacement.
  • MNIS provided the devices on 14 day trial, so that Pinguin could test and confirm that they were 100% happy with the solution

MNI Services were awarded the contract in July 2013 to install Aerohive wireless access points with management via the cloud.

“MNIS have been a valued IT service provider to Pinguin foods; the wireless solution provided has met all our requirements, on time and on budget, without any fuss.” - Wayne Flint (IT Manager, Pinguin Foods)

Aerohive access points
It took one month from the approval date to procure, cable, install and completed the project. MNIS installed Aerohive AP170 access points; an enterprise-grade, high performance (2x2) MIMO solution, designed for high bandwidth demand, with environmental operation of -40 to +55°C and a watertight chassis. Via the four antennas, comes the ability to provide both 2.4Ghz and 5Ghz bands concurrently, to provide both high speed mesh and support for 802.11n, 802.11a, b, and g clients, through an industry unique and resilient controller-less architecture.