ABN Agri, one of Merridale’s longstanding customers has upgraded fuelling facilities within its network of eleven depots, to enable more efficient procurement of its transport fleet’s fuel supplies. The company, which is a leading supplier of animal feed, has been using Merridale fuel management systems for two decades.
“It is not surprising therefore, that the Merridale system has become one of the company’s standard business management tools for cost accounting and transport fleet efficiency,” says ABN’s national distribution manager, Ken Hardgrave.
“As well as providing usage reports, the web service has also paved the way for vendor managed inventory, a significant step forward in our fuel procurement procedures.”
“We introduced centralised records in 2003 with the initial implementation of Merridale FuelFX software,” he said, adding. “We have continued to upgrade the equipment, for instance to incorporate AdBlue dispensing. Twelve months ago, we moved across to the web-based platform, which has further reduced the level of localised administration required by the depots.
“As well as providing usage reports, the web service has also paved the way for vendor managed inventory, a significant step forward in our fuel procurement procedures. To achieve this capability we have upgraded all of the depot’s storage tanks to provide real time updates of stock levels contents. This information is now available to our head office as part of the fuel management status ‘dashboard’.
“This means that, potentially, we have the means to implement VMI for fuel, simply by allowing our fuel supplier to access this information. Given the current status of the tank levels for each depot, our fuel supplier will be able to plan deliveries to make the most efficient use of transport capacity and route planning.”
“Currently ABN Agri is operating a fleet of 120 specialised delivery vehicles, servicing customers’ requirements for animal feed products across the UK. The market is highly competitive and our fuel usage is measured in millions of litres. Therefore, any savings we can shave off from our operating costs, for both logistics as well as vehicles, will make a big difference.
Animal feed is also a commodity product, which means that customers are equally sensitive to changes in price. As one of Britain’s top manufacturers and suppliers of animal feed products, ABN Agri sees its future success as a shared commitment for sustainability, working together with livestock farmers to help underwrite the overall profitability of this sector.