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Storable vs Consumable. What is the difference between these types of Products?

What is the difference between storable and consumable products?

When would I use one over the other?


How do they affect the way Odoo works?

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Murtada
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Great detailed answer Ray. 

Careful planning needs to be undertaken when planning manufacturing BOM materials that use consumables. Also, certain consumables need to be tracked, say a specialty box that is custom ordered. In this case, it is best to configure the consumables as a storable product. This way it can be tracked for available levels and also apply reordering rules. 

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Ray Carnes (ray)
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Exactly. "Consumables" in Odoo don't equate to "Consumables" as defined by others and/or other systems. It is best to configure everything used in manufacturing as storables.

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Ray Carnes (ray)
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Consumables are meant for products you need to receive in the warehouse, but you will not use to make other products and will not sell them to Customers.  You consume them yourselves.

Examples:  Cleaning Supplies, Coffee, Printer Paper.

  • These are the things you would NOT count during a cycle count or full Inventory count. 

  • You can receive them, move them  and  deliver  them and see how many  (quantity  only) are in each location.

  • Odoo will NOT generate draft Purchase Orders (RFQ's) to tell you to order more nor generate Manufacturing Orders to tell you to make more.

  • You would NOT expect to see them in your Inventory Valuation Report. 

  • You would NOT expect to see them valued on your Balance Sheet.

  • They do NOT have any value (always expensed) and are created within Product Categories that are setup to not value Inventory, in other words Manual.

  • The COST field on these Products is always $0.00.

  • The Expense Account on the Product Category (or Product) is used during processing of the Vendor Bill to post the expense debit.


Storables are meant for products you also need to use in Manufacturing, or sell, or convert into Fixed Assets.

Examples: Raw Material, Resale Products, Forklift.

  • These are the things you WOULD count during a cycle count or full inventory count.

  • You can receive them, move them  and  deliver  them and see how many (quantity) are in each location (and how much they are worth).

  • If these products are replenished through buying them, Odoo WILL generate draft Purchase Orders (RFQ's) to tell you to order more (if you have a Vendor setup on the product and a reordering rule defined)

  • If these products are replenished through making them, Odoo WILL generate Manufacturing Orders to tell you to make more (if you have a Bill of Materials defined).

  • You WOULD expect to see them in your Inventory Valuation Report.

  • You WOULD expect to see them valued on your Balance Sheet.

  • They DO have a value (current asset in Inventory) and are created within Product Categories that are setup to value Inventory, in other words Automated.

  • The COST field on these Products (set this logic on the Category) is either manually maintained by you (Standard) or automatically maintained by Odoo based on past Purchase Orders (FIFO and Average).

  • The Expense Account on the Product Category (or Product) is used during processing of the Customer Invoice (when you sell the storable) to post the cost of goods debit.  Accounts setup on the Production Location determine (for when you use the storable in a Manufacturing Order) where WIP debits (when consumed) and credits (when the finished product is created) are posted.


In other systems, consumables are also called Expense Items.


We do not recommend using Consumables for anything you will sell (because it will have no cost of goods) or for anything you will use to make another product (because it will contribute nothing to WIP or the cost of the finished goods).

As part of product Manufacturing, it is possible to model special tools (clamps, retractors, scaffolding) or packaging (cake tin, pelican case, hazmat cooler) that you use (and when you do so these things are unavailable for use until the process is complete). Set these up as storable products within a Category with no Inventory Valuation and a cost of $0.  You can therefore expense (or capitalize) the cost when you purchase them, store them in Inventory, add them to Bills of Materials as a Component and a Byproduct.  The reservation logic will tell you which MO's can be started based on your available Inventory.

It is also possible to model fixed assets (land, buildings) as services, but if you want to see WHERE this fixed asset is (and move it from one place to another) then you can model it as a storable product within a Category with no Inventory Valuation and a cost of $0.  Remember you don't want any current asset value for fixed assets. 


It is important to understand that even though products will show a cost of $0 for the cases I have mentioned, the Purchase Order price(s) will be used during processing of the Vendor Bill to book the expense debit or the fixed asset debit and the associated AP to pay the Vendor. 

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I agree with you in almost everything.

However, "consumable" products can also be used for something you sell but it's difficult to track the quantities and keep an accurate control of the stock . For example: the lettuce in the salads.

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Ray Carnes (ray)
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They can, as long as you know that the price of your salad won't include the cost of your lettuce so your true cost won't be visible. The lettuce would be expensed prior to being used in a Salad.