RFID JournalRFID Journal ESPAÑOLRFID Journal BRASILRFID Journal EVENTSRFID Journal AWARDSRFID CONNECT
Home Internet of Things Aerospace Apparel Energy Defense Health Care Logistics Manufacturing Retail

Wal-Mart Details RFID Requirement

The retailer provides more details about what it expects suppliers to do, and reveals that it is already live with EPC tracking.
By Bob Violino
Tags: Retail
Nov 06, 2003Wal-Mart brought out its big guns to convince suppliers that it is serious about using the Electronic Product Code (EPC) to track pallets and cases. The message was delivered by Vice Chairman Tom Coughlin, Wal-Mart Stores President and CEO Mike Duke, CIO Linda Dillman and others at a gathering of Wal-Mart’s top 100 suppliers outside of Bentonville, Ark., on Nov. 4 and Nov. 5.
Wal-Mart's Dillman

Wal-Mart called the meeting to inform its top 100 suppliers—representatives from about 120 top companies came—about what exactly would be required of them come January 2005, when Wal-Mart wants to begin tracking items using EPCs. Senior executives met with representatives from the suppliers’ companies on Nov. 4 for most of the day. Dillman addressed RFID vendors in the evening. The following day, suppliers were able to visit booths set up by the RFID vendors.

The retailer plans to use a 96-bit EPC with a Global Trade Identification Number, an international standard. It is only interested in tags that operate in the UHF spectrum, which was defined as 868 MHz to 956 MHz. Class 1, Class 0 and Class 0 Plus (a read-write version of Class 0) tags are acceptable, but Dillman said Wal-Mart would like to see suppliers to move to Class 1 version 2 as soon as the specification is ready. (For more on this, see Wal-Mart Opts for EPC Class 1, V2.)

Dillman said Wal-Mart is already tracking pallets and cases from two suppliers coming into one distribution center. She said the retailer wants to quickly expand that to 12 suppliers. Beyond that, the company plans to roll out the technology regionally across the United States. By the end of 2005, it expects to be tracking all pallets and cases of all products from its top 100 U.S. suppliers. By the end of the following year, it hopes to be tracking all pallets and cases from all of its U.S. suppliers. Wal-Mart will then begin rolling the technology out internationally.

Wal-Mart wants to be able to read 100 percent of the pallet tags coming through its dock doors. It doesn’t expect to be able to read 100 percent of cases coming through a dock door, but it will require that for hand scanning. And it expects all tags to be read without slowing down the existing process.

“Wal-Mart is saying to CPG companies and RFID vendors, here’s the bar; see if you can meet and exceed this,” says Jonathan Loretto, global lead for RFID at Cap Gemini Ernst & Young. “It’s achievable. Whether it's achievable in the next 12 months, only time will tell.”

RFID Journal Home

Nearly 95 percent of attendees at RFID Journal University in New York said they would recommend the program to a colleague. There’s still time to sign up for the final RFID Journal University in Chicago (Nov. 17). Register now by visiting RFID Journal University, or call 510-832-1501.

  • Previous Page
  • 1
  • Next Page

USER COMMENTS

Reader . 2010-05-10 09:03:05 PM
Successful? I was wondering if Walmart was successful at implementing tracking pallets and cases from all of its U.S. suppliers? It said it expected to do this by 2006 but I was wondering if they did it at all?

Login and post your comment!

Not a member?

Signup for an account now to access all of the features of RFIDJournal.com!

PREMIUM CONTENT
Case Studies Features Best Practices How-Tos
RFID JOURNAL EVENTS
Live Events Virtual Events Webinars
ASK THE EXPERTS
Simply enter a question for our experts.
TAKE THE POLL
JOIN THE CONVERSATION ON TWITTER
Loading
RFID Journal LIVE! RFID in Health Care LIVE! LatAm LIVE! Brasil LIVE! Europe RFID Connect Virtual Events RFID Journal Awards Webinars Presentations
© Copyright 2002-2014 RFID Journal LLC.
Powered By: Haycco