Big retailers work together to reduce lorry trips

25 February 2010

25 February 2010 | Nick Martindale

The equivalent of 2,000 lorries have been taken off the road following a retail sector project to boost efficiency in deliveries, food and grocery body IGD has said.

The scheme, set up by IGD in 2006, has already exceeded its four-year target of cutting 120 million road miles annually, with a year left to run. Participants include Kellogg’s and Marks & Spencer.

Under the campaign, organisations have used double-decker vehicles and shared lorries to reduce the number of journeys, as well as working with suppliers to cut unnecessary journeys. IGD estimates this is saving around 60 million litres of diesel a year.

Joanne Denney-Finch, chief executive of IGD, said: “Sustainability remains top of the agenda for both the food industry and the government.

“This successful initiative demonstrates that even in a highly competitive industry, companies remain committed to minimising environmental impact, meeting consumer demands and at the same time reducing costs.”

The project was originally led by IGD members but has since spread across the industry and now includes 40 of the leading brands in retail and manufacturing, including Cadbury, Kellogg’s, Marks & Spencer, Procter & Gamble and Nestlé UK.

Chris Tyas, business services and group supply chain director, UK & Ireland, at Nestlé, said there was still the potential for further reductions.

“One-quarter of lorries on our roads are still estimated to be running empty on their way back from delivering goods,” he said. “This offers huge scope for more companies of all sizes to implement similar activities, potentially saving millions more road miles in the UK.”

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