How Hexaly solves CLAI’s food box packing optimization problem in seconds

Cooperativa Lavoratori Agricoli Imolesi (€300M in revenue, 500 employees), namely CLAI, is an Italian agri-food cooperative with two plants producing fresh meats and salami. Logistics & Automation Consulting (LAC), a consulting and software company specializing in solving supply chain optimization problems, has developed an optimization solution for CLAI to optimize the packing of food products into boxes for customer delivery. This food box packing optimization solution relies on Hexaly Optimizer as a general-purpose optimization engine.

Food box packing optimization problem

Input data

200 customer orders per day


For each customer, up to 100 food products to pack into boxes


  • Different types of boxes are available, with various capacities
  • All products cannot be packed together into all kinds of boxes (mutual exclusion)
  • Some products have to be packed into a box before others (precedences)


  • Minimize the number of used boxes
  • Minimize the number of types of used boxes
  • Maximize the use of small boxes
  • Minimize the number of different products within each box (to make control on delivery easier)
  • Balance the content of all boxes (to make palletization more stable)


Here are the key figures about the resolution of the problem by Hexaly:

  • 10 seconds of running time per customer order
  • Solutions with an optimality gap < 0.01% for all objectives

Why Hexaly?

LAC relied on Hexaly to efficiently model and solve CLAI’s food box packing optimization problem. The resulting optimization software solution is integrated into CLAI’s ERP system and used daily in production. The key factors which convinced LAC to choose Hexaly against traditional MIP solvers to carry out its service projects are speed, robustness, ease of use, dedicated and responsive support, and last but not least, straightforward licensing and competitive pricing.

LAC (Logistics & Automation Consulting) has found more than an ally in its partner Hexaly, the world's best-performing optimization engine for solving complex problems. LAC can take full advantage of the capabilities of Hexaly Optimizer, to develop custom solutions tailored to the customer's problem, offering real bespoke software delivering high-performance results. Finally, InTime was born from this partnership, LAC software for the optimized planning of truck loads and deliveries, generating savings of up to 20% of the direct costs of the activity for its users.

Fabio Bursi Senior Partner, Logistics & Automation Consulting (LAC)

Please look at our customers‘ webpage to discover more case studies in various industries. Are you interested in trying it out? Get free trial licenses here. In the meantime, feel free to contact us; we will be glad to exchange your optimization problems.