Spar’s streamlined consolidation centre system is reducing the distance delivery lorries take by 7.4 million miles a year, the symbol group announced last week.
Working with distribution firm Oakland International, the chain says it has seen “huge carbon reductions, environmental and renewable changes” as well as a dramatic reduction in road miles, representing a reduction of 3,259 tonnes per year of carbon emissions savings.
The consolidation brings together five wholesalers networks into one operation to reduce costs and the amount of road miles it covers. The groups claims this also provides a better service for Spar retailers by allowing the consolidation centre to develop more convenient distribution schedules, therefore improving availability and increasing the frequency of deliveries.
Debbie Robinson, Spar UK managing Director, said: “The initiative delivers huge savings in carbon reduction and road miles travelled through the use of efficient and sustainable supply chain routes, underpinned by Oakland International’s environmental policies of replacing energy rich with energy efficient heating, refrigeration and lighting systems.
“The strength of our partnership with Oakland International and the enormous support of all our stakeholders has helped us to deliver what now is a world class supply chain that is both environmentally and commercially beneficial for our suppliers, Spar retailers and in-store customers.
“The ability to offer a daily delivery of chilled goods for all suppliers, while reducing road miles, was a massive challenge – but an amazing 7.4 million miles are now saved per year, marks a huge saving. ” said Robinson, adding: “The success of the scheme helps us demonstrate our long term commitment to providing world class service to our retail partners, which we have been doing for almost 60 years. We are serious about being a sustainable symbol group and one of the nations’ best convenience supply chains.”
Oakland International has invested in photovoltaic solar panels and renewable green technology, including installing a sustainable reed bed sewage system and on-site sewage treatment plant. Other projects planned include a roll-out of more solar panels, a wind turbine and biomass to form part of a larger programme of carbon reduction currently underway at the firm.
Investment in energy efficient chillers to its warehousing facilities, together with replacing energy rich lighting systems with LEDs and substituting existing heating appliances with energy efficient radiators, have all delivered significant energy savings, the company says, adding this will contribute to its goal of becoming a fully carbon neutral business by 2016.