Case Study: The Little Potato Company Finds Big Perks with Half Pallets

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A retail and sustainability success story

The Opportunity
Help North America’s biggest creamer potato grower manage packaging and display costs while enhancing retail sales and sustainability.

The Solution
Collaborate with CHEP to incorporate CarbonNeutral® pooled half pallets into the supply chain, improving point-of-sale appeal, reducing labor, cutting costs and increasing sustainability.

  

The Little Potato Company is the largest grower of creamer potatoes in North America, supplying grocery stores in the U.S. and Canada with a delicious variety of these easy-to-prepare potatoes. While it’s hard to resist the obvious play on words, keep this in mind: Owner Angela Santiago started selling her harvest at local farmers’ markets some 25 years ago, and quickly created a new niche in the very competitive produce market. That’s no small potatoes.

For years, consumers found bags of The Little Potato Company creamer potatoes in huge bins at the grocery store. The big footprint drove sales, but the display method was bulky, expensive and not sustainable: The bins shipped on one-way white wood pallets that were cumbersome and labor-intensive.

“We needed something that required less handling in our plants and at the retail level,” says Christa Wagner, Director of Advertising and Promotion at The Little Potato Company. “We had to bring down the cost of the display, while still moving tremendous volume and having a brand impact.”

Wagner says CHEP’s CarbonNeutral® pooled half pallet stacks up benefits throughout the supply chain: It delivers the strength needed to carry and protect heavy bags of potatoes, creates labor savings in the plant and at the store level, and presents a modern, appealing image in the produce section and other areas of the grocery store.

People don’t wake up thinking about potatoes. This display puts our potatoes front and center. It answers the 4 p.m. dilemma: ‘What should we have for dinner?’

Christa Wagner Director of Advertising and Promotion, The Little Potato Company

Half Pallet Promotional Display

“The new display looks fresh and modern and allows us to put more potatoes on a pallet, driving profit, sales and sustainability,” Wagner says. “We ship the same cartons throughout North America, with promotional messaging on the header that can be customized and shipped with the pallet. It’s ready to go – the retailers just have to remove the shrink wrap.

“The old bins required maintenance; the top was open, the inventory was below, and the store had to keep refilling it,” she says. “Now, we have a better display on a better pallet.”

  
  

As an agricultural organization, The Little Potato Company is always focused on sustainability, and appreciates the benefits CHEP brings to the table. While the CHEP “share and reuse” business model is inherently sustainable, CHEP takes the next step to achieve net zero carbon emissions for the half pallet by supporting the Mississippi Valley Reforestation Project.

From Better to Positive: CHEP’s circular business is instrinsically sustainable and offers carbon neutral solutions for the supply chain. Taking a leap forward, CHEP’s new 2025 vision is about creating regenerative supply chains that deliver life’s essentials in a nature-positive way. This includes restoring forests, going beyond zero waste and drawing down more carbon than we produce. For example, CHEP will sustainably grow two trees for every tree we use - one tree for the pallets and one for the planet – adding millions of new trees by 2030. CHEP will also maintain 100% sustainable sourcing.

The Little Potato Company has realized impressive business results by incorporating CHEP’s CarbonNeutral® pooled half pallet displays and block pallets into its supply chain.

  • Significant reduction in packaging costs and better food safety using the half pallet displays.
  • Meeting retailer expectations as impactful, attractive, versatile, shoppable and well branded half pallet displays that hold more product.
  • Essentially no damage reported in testing the half pallet display with 700 stores.
  • Achieving net zero carbon emissions for the half pallet with CHEP’s support of the Mississippi Valley Reforestation Project.
  • In a 7-year period, the Little Potato Company achieved significant environmental savings by using CHEP 48x40-inch block pallets:
    • Avoided more than 111,000 pounds of CO2 from entering the atmosphere.
    • Eliminated nearly 148,000 pounds of solid waste from landfill.

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Case Study: The Little Potato Company Finds Big Perks with Half Pallets | CHEP