Food firms should be open about their needs: logistics boss

By Noli Dinkovski

- Last updated on GMT

Related tags Supply chain management Manufacturing

Food manufacturers should be open about their needs to third-party logistics firms if they want to receive the best market insight and value, the newly-appointed boss of NFT Distribution Operations has claimed.

Ross Eggleton, who took over as chief executive at the firm at the start of the year, told he was on a mission to “reconnect with the manufacturing base”​, to enable NFT to better link manufacturers to their “ultimate customer”​, the retailers.

“Where I’m looking to take the business is that we have a better understanding of both the manufacturer’s needs, the retailer’s needs, and the whole food supply chain,”​ he said.

“So, it’s really an ask​ [for food firms] to re-evaluate NFT and see if we can be part of the solution for you.”

State-of-the-art facility

Speaking from NFT’s recently-opened 2,140m2 ​modern chilled distribution facility in Tilbury, Essex, Eggleton said he was “really keen to get into your manufacturing facilities and into your production environments, and understand you and your business more”​.

“I think the benefits that NFT can provide to potential customers and existing customers, is that we can really offer a whole menu or suite of solutions," ​he said.

“We have an established prime-shared network, so we can move a single pallet at a competitive rate,”​ he explained.

NFT operates 16 distribution sites across the country. It officially opened the £25M facility at the Port of Tilbury in April 2016​.

800,000 cases of fresh and chilled produce

The warehouse, which currently handles 800,000 cases of fresh and chilled produce a week, can offer a range of temperature regimes.

Formerly supply chain and logistics director at Morrisons, Eggleton joined NFT as chief operating officer last June, before being elevated to deputy chief executive in September.

His appointment as chief executive replaces David Frankish, who has become vice-chairman with responsibility for strategic customer development and mergers and aquisitions opportunities.

To read more on Eggleton’s plans for NFT and why he believes greater collaboration through the supply chain is essential – part of our Big Interview series of profiles – order your copy of the January issue of ​​Food Manufacture magazine​​​.

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