Woodward Foodservice opens new hub

Woodward Foodservice has enhanced its distribution network, just months after its acquisition of DBC.

It has opened a new chilled and ambient distribution centre in the West Midlands, which will act as a UK hub for its business.

Although development of the hub began before Woodward’s acquisition of DBC Foodservice in September, it will help to service its recently expanded estate of 27 distribution sites across the UK, with a combined turnover of pound;500m.

Work on the integration of the two businesses is still going on, and has been made more complex by DBC taking on the MOD supply contract in October, but Ed Hyslop, chief executive of Woodward Foodservice is expected to reveal more about its progress shortly.

The new hub’s location, at Witton, close to Birmingham’s Spaghetti Junction, will complement Woodward’s Midland’s-based frozen operation, the 57,000sq ft Darlaston facility established in 1999.

Over pound;1.2m has been invested in the 90,000sq ft purpose-built facility, which houses state-of-the-art refrigeration and IT infrastructure and will employ 120 people when it is running at full capacity early next year.

Woodward is now making chilled and ambient deliveries from the 24/7 operation to thousands of restaurants, pubs, hotels and schools.

Fresh meat and fish prepared at the company’s nearby specialist units is also being cross-docked at the new hub, ready for next day distribution.

Hyslop said: “Following our acquisition of DBC we are now a significantly larger business – during the next 12 months we will be making over two million customer deliveries across the UK. With our new central high-tech hub, we can meet the needs of our customers – fast and frequent delivery of extensive chilled, fresh and ambient product ranges.”

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