Strategic partnership helps temperature control operator to navigate rough waters

Energy hikes, an ongoing capacity crunch and heightened logistical costs are just some of the everyday challenges that temperature control operators throughout the UK have been forced to endure in recent months.

Following the Covid-19 pandemic, the landscape of the temperature-controlled space has indeed somewhat shifted, with further challenges being posed to on operators in their pursuit of meeting the ever-changing demands of customers.

Following a significant shake up by the UK’s food manufacturing alongside the impacts of contemporary consumer demands as well as the challenges posed by Brexit, temperature-controlled operators & Cold Chain Federation member’s JS Davidson and Freshlinc regularly join forces to help navigate through the trials and tribulations of the ever-changing marketplace to ensure optimum service levels are maintained.

As a leading service provider throughout the UK and Europe, Spalding-based Freshlinc specialise in the supply chain management of temperature controlled fresh, chilled and horticultural products.

With several different trading divisions under the Freshlinc Group umbrella, the growing business forged a relationship with their counterpart JS Davidson three years ago in order to mitigate everyday market challenges, especially with regards to capacity issues during periods of high demand.

Having extensive experience in delivering temperature controlled and distribution solutions to major retailers and various food manufactures/suppliers across Europe and the UK, the company’s expertise and similar customer base, along with its fleet of 380 tractor units and 700 trailers, has enabled JS Davidson to reap the rewards from this fruitful working relationship.

JS Davidson, which has recently undergone a major rebrand, has invested heavily in a suite of improvements across the business since the pandemic, with £1 million of capex being dedicated to streaming and enhancing operations across its two sites in Bourne and Peterborough – which Freshlinc utilise to alleviate capacity shortages.

John Davidson, Managing Director of JS Davidson commented: “The hurdles faced over the past three years have indeed been challenging, however through building strategic relationships with fellow temperature-controlled operators such as Freshlinc, we have been able to mitigate issues as and when they have arisen.

“Especially with regard to scaling our temperature-controlled distribution arm, Freshlinc has been invaluable in ensuring customer consignments get where they need to without fuss. Similarly, if their customers need cold store space – which still remains in short supply throughout the UK – then we are always on hand to find capacity within our facilities in Peterborough and Bourne to help them meet demand. The relationship works evenly both ways in many respects and as we are local to one another, we are each readily on hand to help in a time of need.

“The working relationship has been crucial to helping us grow over the past few years. The industry has experienced significant demand over the past three years, largely in line with the impacts of changing consumer demands as well as sky high energy costs, the transition towards Net Zero and of course the challenges inflicted through Brexit.

John continued: “Therefore having trusted partners on hand who you can call upon, especially during periods of high demand is imperative. By sharing the workload, it also helps alleviate cost pressures associated with running a temperature-controlled supply chain operation, costs which have indeed risen as a result of the well-documented energy hike.

“We are delighted with how the relationship has progressed over the years and for it to continue to grow from strength to strength in the near future as we undoubtedly work together to navigate through the challenges and complexities of managing a temperature-controlled supply chain operation while continuing to meet customer demand.” 

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