The photo-sharing social networking service is allowing users to order and purchase food from Australian businesses via a new feature. Read more
Supermarket giants Coles and Woolworths are hiring thousands of people and opening three new distribution centres to meet the increased demand and logistics challenge. Read more
Wodonga-based transport company, Ron Finemore Transport (RFT) has been awarded the Woolworths Refrigerated Meat Co Melbourne – Sydney – Melbourne looping service contract for the next three years.
RFT said in a statement that the freight task aligns with its continued investment in its driver and operational skill sets, market leading technology platforms, advanced temperature control safety features and its desire to increase its refrigeration footprint.
“RFT’s ability to provide live temperature GPS tracking data and set point temperature alert messaging configurations were highly valued by the Woolworths team, as is our proven ability within the NDC Melbourne – Sydney Linehaul shuttle contracts,” the company added.
“RFT’s continued investment in Blue Tree IT platforms enables our business to lead the market in real time location and temperature monitoring of product ranges.
“This new contract allows the opportunity for professional refrigeration drivers to join our RFT team to safely optimise our performance in this new business opportunity. It will also be important to continue to service the existing Woolworths contracts safely and reliably as well as deliver on the requirements of this new contract.
“Our performance, reputation and capability to retain and win work is determined by our continued ability to provide safe and reliable service and delivery to promise.”
The contract will commence on 16 April 2018, with four single 26-pallet refrigeration vehicles operating daily with an extra vehicle for Thursday service. RFT reportedly moves to B-double 36-pallet refrigeration vehicles in September/October 2018.
The temperature-controlled supply chain company that recently purchased Swire Cold Storage, Emergent Cold, has signed a Heads of Agreement with technology company irexchange, to support the next phase of growth for both businesses.
The Agreement outlines a collaboration between Emergent Cold and irexchange that will provide temperature-controlled flow-through distribution-centre transport and fulfilment capability to irexchange, initially within Victoria and then nationally. irexchange is to provide technology and analytical capabilities to facilitate the creation of a next-generation temperature-controlled supply chain capability.
The Agreement with Emergent Cold will support irexchange’s growth into fresh and perishable products and enable irexchange to broaden its customer base.
“We are pleased to partner with irexchange to develop the next generation of supply-chain capability in the temperature-controlled market, especially for smaller independent retailers,” said Greg Holt, Managing Director, Emergent Cold Australia. “There are great synergies between Emergent Cold’s capability and the irexchange platform and technology which we look forward to realising.”
Clive Yoxall, CEO, irexchange, added: “We are continuing to build our efficient world-class network and national footprint. With this agreement, we will deepen our support capabilities across the independent grocery and smaller retailer sectors. Our new relationship with Emergent Cold is a significant and important milestone and we are confident that both our organisations will generate strong and sustained value through the partnership.”
JD.com, one of China’s largest online retailers, will open its regional headquarters in Melbourne, the Victorian Government has announced.
JD.com has over 266 million customer accounts, and operates China’s largest nationwide fulfilment network, with seven fulfilment centres and more than 400 warehouses in 2,830 counties and districts throughout China.
The company sells a wide range of goods, including vitamins, electronics, clothing and books.
Following a visit by representatives from JD.com to the Food and Beverage Trade Week in Victoria in October, the Andrews Labor Government has been working closely with the company to encourage it to establish a presence in the region.
“This announcement will give more Victorian businesses the opportunity to take their products to the world and is a clear indication that we’re leading the nation on the digital economy,” said Victorian Minister for Trade and Investment Philip Dalidakis.
“We welcome JD.com with open arms and look forward to all the opportunities that this new regional HQ will bring to Victoria, including strengthening our economy and creating more local jobs.”
Patrick Nestel, Manager of JD.com Australia, added:
“Victoria’s wealth of high-quality suppliers, supportive government, 24/7 airport and largest container port in the southern hemisphere made it the obvious choice for JD.com’s new regional HQ.”
GS1 Australia has formed a partnership with Foodbank aiming to help tackle Australia’s food insecurity crisis through the GS1 Australia Recall portal, with Foodbank subscribing to receive timely product recall and withdrawal notices.
Foodbank, Australia’s largest food relief organisation, can now receive communication from manufacturers and suppliers about a product recall or withdrawal using the Recall service – an online portal to significantly streamline and improve the product recall and withdrawal process.
GS1 Australia’s head of supply chain improvement services Peter Chambers said: “GS1 Australia’s Recall portal now offers Foodbank the functionality to manage product recalls and remove the items from the Foodbank distribution system accurately and effectively. Food safety today is high on the menu with a need for an unequivocal standard practice across the entire food sector. Issuing a recall or withdrawal notification using Recall is simple, fast, and inexpensive.”
General manager national supply chain at Foodbank Australia Michael Davidson said: “Subscribing to Recall now gives us the reassurance that we will immediately be notified by our suppliers in the event of a food item being recalled or withdrawn from the supply chain. It also gives manufacturers and suppliers the opportunity to donate product withdrawals as an alternative to that product going into landfill. Instead, we will re-direct it across our national network of front-line charities to provide food and grocery items to vulnerable Australians who are doing it tough.”
Foodbank works collaboratively with the entire Australian food and retail sector and throughout the supply chain to source and distribute food to front line charities around the country.
The organisation receives donations of stock that is out of specification, close to expiry, surplus to requirement, or has incorrect, or faulty packaging. As long as the products are safe for human consumption and not part of a product recall, then Foodbank can gratefully accept them.
“We rely on food donations from a variety of suppliers including farmers, manufacturers, distributors, and retailers to help us reach the 3.6 million Australians who are suffering with food insecurity each year. With our vision being an Australia free from hunger and food waste, we are encouraging all suppliers that kindly donate surplus product to also notify us about a product withdrawal as soon as possible,” added Mr Davidson.
“GS1 Australia is excited that Foodbank has selected Recall, the first online recall portal to be certified by HACCP, to manage a recall or withdrawal of a food item that has been donated to them for the safety of the consumer,” said Mr Chambers.
For more information about Recall call 1300 227 263 or email email@example.com.
Agricultural business Simplot Australia has committed to a new facility in Truganina, a 20,725m2 site with an additional 5,156m2 of super-canopy.
Simplot Australia owns Australian brands such as Birds Eye, Leggo’s, Chiko and Edgell, John West and Lean Cuisine, and distributes its products to supermarkets and foodservice outlets across Australia.
The company used the back-to-back expiry of both a third-party logistics (3PL) operating agreement and a property lease to review its mid- to long-term operational strategy, with design help from consultancy TM Insight and construction carried out by property group Dexus.
“From the outset, we worked with Simplot to design the internal and external operations with efficiency and flexibility of primary importance,” said Milan Andjelkovic, Director, TM Insight. “The end result will see Simplot implement various types of automation which will reduce order to delivery timeframes and substantially increase operational efficiencies and accuracies for Simplot’s customers.”
Chris Mackenzie, Head of Industrial Developments, Dexus, added, “This new facility will set a precedent for integrated supply chain and property outcomes in Australia with the customer, developer and experts working together to produce significant operational savings for the customer.”
The facility will be operational in the first quarter of 2018 and will have an end value of approximately $25 million.
Packaging manufacturer Pro-Pac has agreed to a $177.5 million transformational merger with Integrated Packaging Group (IPG).
IPG is Australia’s largest specialist manufacturer in flexibles, film and wrap – and it operates five manufacturing facilities across Australia and New Zealand.
“The combination of Pro-Pac and IPG provides many exciting opportunities in the growing Australian flexibles packaging market,” said Grant Harrod, CEO, Pro-Pac.
“Pro-Pac’s expanded capacity to manufacture and distribute high-quality products will delight our customer base and provide us with a one-stop-shop offering.
“Pro-Pac will be a world class manufacturer without geographic constraints as we increase our offerings in key areas such as food service and agriculture film.”
The merger will also see Rupert Harrington, Advent’s Executive Chairman, appointed to Pro-Pac’s senior management team, bringing to the table experience in manufacturing, services, health and technology.
IPG’s CEO, John Cerini, will also be appointed to lead Pro-Pac’s Industrial and Flexible Division.
“The acquisition of IPG represents a significant milestone in the realisation of Pro-Pac’s vision to become the pre-eminent flexible and industrial packaging manufacturer and distributer in Australia,” said Ahmed Fahour, Chairman, Pro-Pac .
“The opportunity to combine two very complementary businesses will deliver significant long-term value to Pro-Pac shareholders.”
Cold storage service provider Laverton Cold Storage has committed to doubling the size of its recently completed facility located in Truganina in Melbourne’s west, an expansion that will increase the building area of the first-stage development to over 12,000m2.
Laverton Cold Storage completed a 5,920m2 state-of-the-art, temperature-controlled warehouse and blast freezer building in 2015. The expansion, set to be complete in November 2017, will increase its area by 6,520m2.
The expansion will provide additional storage capabilities and expand the facility’s range of temperature-controlled zones for separate product types.
“This most recent expansion highlights our growth and is a testament to the level of service we have been able to provide our existing customer base from our new site,” said Richard Ralph, Managing Director, Laverton Cold Storage. “It has also provided us the opportunity to attract new clients, and we are looking forward to having the fully completed site operational as we amp up for the Christmas period.”
This expansion will focus on environmentally sustainable design, in particular, the use of significant solar power to reduce Laverton Cold Storage’s operating costs and footprint over the term of its lease.
Consultancy firm TM Insight partnered with Laverton Cold Storage in the design and delivery of both stages of developing the purpose-built cold logistics facility.
“The developments have been specifically designed to allow Laverton Cold Storage to offer greater storage capacities in an efficient and optimal manner, while also adhering to the lean principles and cold-chain compliance,” said Nathan Bingham, Director, TM Insight.
“Due to the service Laverton Cold Storage provides, it was also imperative that we focused on sustainable design to ensure operational and energy efficiencies. These cost saving will no doubt provide a competitive advantage.”
The global markets for technology, beauty and food products are growing at an impressive rate, with consumers in all corners of the globe expecting availability, prompt delivery, and a visible supply chain.
Food is perhaps the most challenging export for any country, as it necessitates precise delivery timings, strict customs compliance and sophisticated and reliable technology to maintain freshness and prevent contamination – with no margin for error.
For Australia to maintain food export compliance as global demand grows, its logistics industry will soon need to invest in the development of cold-chain technology, an industry expert told Logistics & Materials Handling.
“As Australian food exports reach further afield, it’s crucial that the cold-chain technology used during transport can be trusted to maintain freshness, consistently,” said a representative of logistics technology manufacturer FEMC Australia.
According to the expert, improving technology will be increasingly important for transporting perishable items to countries with immature cold chains.
“While the Australian cold chain is robust – a necessity given the tough climate – many countries importing its goods do not have the technology required to guarantee safe delivery,” she added.
The representative noted that by expanding into new markets, Australian exporters have the opportunity to further their reputation for quality, but the health implications of substandard cold storage through the supply chain could put this at risk.
Trade agreements with emerging markets will compound the issue of cold-chain compliance, she said.
“Initiatives by the Australian and world governments, such as the Trans-Pacific Partnership and recent free-trade agreements, highlight the fact that the importance of geographical borders is diminishing in the face of global demand,” the FEMC expert noted.
“Quality perishable goods are integral to Australia’s global import value proposition, so cold chain logistics technology needs to grow alongside the industry.”