There are few road transport operators who are more committed to the protection of the environment than Trewithen Dairy – a food products distribution company, based in the heart of rural Cornwall.
“Our business is expanding and the transport fleet has more than doubled in size over the last six years,” explains, transport manager Chris Price.
“As a fleet operator we must manage our fuel usage efficiently. This is vital, not only to control our operating costs but it also underlines our on-going commitment to a green sustainable economy and the protection of the environment. As part of this strategy we have taken a number of steps to improve on the company’s fuel storage and performance.”
Firstly in 2011 it was decided to install a depot storage tank, enabling the company to negotiate more favourable terms than fuel cards based on retail forecourts. But as the fleet continued to grow, the single pump fuelling point came under increasing pressure. Access was restricted and time was being wasted as drivers often had to queue for fuel.
Chris Price continues: “It soon became clear that we needed a better plan that would allow for multiple fuelling as well as bringing together other depot services such as vehicle wash. We also needed more parking space for delivery vehicles and trailers.”
“Following the grant of regional development funding, Trewithen Dairy launched a project to revamp its depot yard facilities. This included the installation of a 52K litres dual compartment storage tank feeding through to a four pump fuelling island, providing road diesel and gas oil for the trailer refrigeration units. A separate tank and pump was also installed to dispense Adblue – an additive used to reduce exhaust emissions. Groundwork included a hard standing with appropriate drainage to protect the environment from accidental spills and run off from the vehicle wash.
“We already had experience with the Merridale fuel management software and we knew that the dispensing pumps and monitoring hardware were tried and tested.
Trewithen Dairy is a family owned business which has built up excellent working relationships within the region’s farming community. It’s a very close knit community and Trewithen acts as the hub and route to market for their dairy produce. Key accounts include Asda and other major supermarket chains as well as leading brands such as Kelly’s Ice Cream for milk and clotted cream.
Chris Price concludes saying: “We are in a growing market with absolutely no compromise on quality. To access the fuel, drivers use a smart key which is programmed against the vehicle account. So the system records automatically each time it is fuelled, the time and quantity drawn. The same key is also used to access the vehicle wash so we now have an audit trail to back up our vehicle cleansing procedures. This is another important benefit for this market sector.
“Sustainability means thinking local and doing the right thing, financially as well as from an environmental point of view. These are brand qualities that we strive to project. We have a great product and we are really proud of what we do.”
“In operation, the Merridale fuel management system provides the tools for monitoring fuel usage which in effect, is also providing the means for controlling whole vehicle CO2. This is all relatively new but we are developing procedures which will allow us to scrutinise and manage our carbon footprint.
“Most importantly this is something in which our customers are also interested. They like to know that we are being as green as possible,” says Chris Price.