By Kate Stubbs, Executive Business Development, Marketing & Communication, Barloworld Logistics
Highlighting its position as the leader in smart supply chain solutions in southern Africa, Barloworld Logistics took home the Gold Award and was named Overall Winner at the annual Logistics Achiever Awards. The award ceremony was held on 13th October at Montecasino in Johannesburg, and recognises achievements and innovations ‘that have created market advantage today for a strong, sustainable foundation into the future.’
“As an organisation we attach great value to these awards, as they seek to shine a spotlight on the critical issue of sustainability in supply chain management and the industry’s progress as a whole,” says Steve Ford, CEO, Barloworld Logistics. “We are particularly proud of our work and long term partnership with Meadow Feeds which has allowed us to apply our thinking and ideas around smart solutions, and which ultimately earned Barloworld Logistics the top honours at the 2016 Logistics Achiever Awards.”
Meadow Feeds is Africa’s largest animal feed manufacturer, and the company has a 10-year contract in place with Barloworld Transport, a division of Barloworld Logistics to manage its outbound distribution. Their innovative distribution model relies on a Make-to-Order production system whereby farmers hold very limited stock.
“The partnership, which revolves around ongoing collaboration and close integration, has resulted in the development of a flexible, optimised and innovative supply chain solution that delivers sustained and shared value for Meadow Feeds, their customers and Barloworld Transport,” explains Kate Stubbs, Head of Marketing and Business Development, Barloworld Logistics. “We are thrilled to note that despite a tough economic environment, Meadow Feeds has achieved significant year on year savings and an increase in market share. These gains are testament to the importance of putting smart supply chain solutions in place, and working closely with the right partners to continuously innovate and evolve.”
The partnership with Meadow Feeds also saw Barloworld Transport win the Enviro award, ‘for an outstanding contribution to the environment through an innovative sustainable transportation solution’.
As Stubbs points out, the collaboration with Meadow Feeds is a strong example of a multi-layered and comprehensive solution that has resulted in a reduction in the number of vehicles on the road, operational efficiencies, major cost savings and a significant decrease in carbon emissions.
“We modelled the distribution function on a multi-faceted approach, which utilised advanced route planning software, a modernised fleet and a unique commercial structure,” says Stubbs. “Combined with a forward thinking mindset and smart initiatives on strategic, tactical as well as operational levels, Meadow Feeds were able to achieve a significant improvement in the efficiency of their overall distribution.”
Andy Crocker, MD of Meadow Feeds added: “We are proud of our partnership with Barloworld Transport and delighted with this award which recognizes the collaborative effort of the two companies. When Meadow Feeds outsourced the non-core function of outgoing logistics, we knew that the ultimate success of the relationship would depend on the continuous improvement mind-set that both companies share. Every year, real costs have to be removed from the business in order to maintain the year on year benefits which have been achieved consistently over the past four years. We have had to challenge each other to glean these benefits and will need to continue to do so in the difficult environment that the feed industry, and its customers, now face.”
Embracing the Circular Economy
SmartMatta, a division of Barloworld Logistics that specialises in sustainable waste management practices, also earned an Enviro award for its work with Astrapak - which manufactures and distributes an extensive range of rigid and flexible plastic packaging products. The Enviro award recognised SmartMatta for ‘excellence in their contribution to the environment’ through innovative environmental solutions and reduction of waste to landfill.
According to Stubbs, the close partnership between Astrapak and SmartMatta clearly incorporated circular economy principles, which is an industrial economy concept that furthers resource productivity by aiming to reduce waste and erase pollution by design or intention.
“In our view, waste patterns unveil what is truly happening within the supply chain, from source to completion,” says Stubbs. “So by carefully consolidating Astrapak’s waste services and activities through a single service provider, smart waste solutions were implemented. These solutions quickly led to the improvement of recyclable volumes, and critically, to a tangible reduction in waste to landfill.”
Following on its impressive showing at the 2016 Logistics Achiever Awards, Barloworld Logistics will continue to promote and implement smart supply chain solutions across industries and sectors. In a local market environment besieged by economic, social and political volatility, businesses need all the help they can get with regards to achieving sustainable growth in the long term.