Established in 1966, Belmont Meats Ltd. is a manufacturer, processor, and distributor of quality meat products. The company’s burgers and steaks are sold in the restaurants and stores of some of the biggest names in business. With annual revenues exceeding $100 million and an unmatched reputation for quality, value, and service, Belmont Meats knows how to run a successful business. The enterprise resource planning (ERP) solution Belmont Meats selected to grow its business on is Sage ERP X3.
Live in just four months
Until recently, the company ran its operations on an aging AS/400 system. “It was no longer cutting it,” recalls Ryad Ali, director of finance and IT for Belmont Meats. “We needed something much more robust. We wanted an ERP system that is designed for the food industry, was easy to use, fast to implement, and cost effective. Plus we wanted local support for the software. We found all of that in Sage ERP X3.”
With the help of its local Sage business partner, Belmont Meats was live on Sage ERP X3 in just four months. “We approached it sensibly, implementing the basics first and building one solid platform,” explains Ali. “We were fortunate to have a partner that understands the product and our industry very well.”
Support for multiple manufacturing models
Belmont Meat’s manufacturing activities are unique in that some of its products follow a process manufacturing model, using recipes of ingredients that combine to make the finished product. Other products are yield based, with variable pounds of a raw ingredient netting some number of ready-to-sell items. “The costing for those two types of manufacturing is very different,” notes Ali. “We are able to support both models well in Sage ERP X3.”
Lot tracking is vitally important to Belmont Meats, from both a regulatory compliance and quality control standpoint. Sage ERP X3 provides complete forward and backward lot traceability for each ingredient and finished item, as well as shelf-life management with expiration date control.
Tight cost control
The company’s purchasing and distribution process can be complex, but the sophisticated inventory management functionality within Sage ERP X3 ensures that products are accurately procured, tracked, and accounted for throughout the production process.
“We might receive a shipment from a supplier, and there will be other associated invoices from other suppliers for freight or additional charges—all of which need to be included in the total product cost,” explains Ali. “Without a sophisticated ERP system like Sage ERP X3, this type of accounting is very difficult.”
With customers and suppliers across Canada and the United States, Belmont Meats makes good use of the multicurrency features in Sage ERP X3. And with the company’s utilization of third-party logistics providers, the ability to easily transfer products between warehouse locations is appreciated.
Access to actionable data Ali explains that one of the biggest overall benefits the company realizes with Sage ERP X3 is direct access to actionable business data. “The software collects and tracks a tremendous amount of data and makes that data accessible for use in business decision making,” he says. “We are taking deep dives into the data and uncovering facts about our production process. Now we have accurate data we use to make fact-based decisions.”
Staff continues to learn to leverage the extensive data available, using it to improve processes and refine workflows. “I’ve noticed a change in thinking at Belmont Meats,” Ali says. “Increasingly we are questioning old ways of doing things and challenging the status quo. We’ve seen what access to current, reliable data can do, and it’s changing the way we work.”
In operating a busy, fast-paced operation like Belmont Meats, management and staff alike find the ability to manage by exception invaluable. “The exception reporting in Sage ERP X3 is powerful,” says Ali. “Sage ERP X3 alerts us when there are anomalies in the data, allowing us to quickly take action. For example, each day as we do our production reporting, we can detect immediately if the yield is out of range. Previously, by the time we got around to generating those reports, it was too late to take the appropriate action.”
He concludes, “Sage ERP X3 is a strong application, well suited to the food manufacturing industry. It is quick to implement, easy to use, and the support from both Sage and our Sage business partner is superb.”
About The Sage Group, plc
We provide small and medium-sized organizations with a range of easy-to-use, secure, and efficient business management software and services-from accounting and payroll to enterprise resource planning, customer relationship management, and payments. Our customers receive continuous advice and support through our global network of local experts to help them solve their business problems, giving them the confidence to achieve their business ambitions. Formed in 1981, Sage was floated on the London Stock Exchange in 1989 and entered the FTSE 100 in 1999. Sage has millions of customers and more than 12,700 employees in 24 countries covering the UK & Ireland, mainland Europe, North America, South Africa, Australia, Asia, and Brazil.