Case Study: Tri-K Industries

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TRI-K (Galaxy Group Member): Reusables Deliver Cost Savings and Improved Sanitation

After making the switch to reusable containers, TRI-K gained a notable edge as the supplier of choice, ultimately helping their customer reduce shipping costs while improving inventory management and reducing their overall carbon footprint.

Reusables deliver cost savings and improved sanitation for personal care industry

By supplying product in reusable containers to a customer in the personal care industry, TRI-K Industries demonstrated itsleadership and increased its business with the customer.

TRI-K  Industries  specializes  in  the  sourcing,  manufacturing,  and  distribution  of  quality  ingredients  and  technologies  for the global cosmetic and personal care industries. While visiting a customer site, Jack Fallon, Vice President of Operations and Sales, noticed they were using reusable liquid containers on their production line.

“The plant manager said the totes were very sanitary and provided better stacking and storage. That led me to explore the idea of providing our product in a reusable container to another one of our customers. Taking this innovative approach gave  TRI-K  an  edge  as  a  supplier  and  showed  that  we  are  better and smarter in delivering product. The customer liked the reusables so much that they increased their business with us,” said Fallon.

Today,  TRI-K  is  sending  its  surfactants  to  its  customer, a final formulator, in the CHEP Pallecon 315 container. The 315-gallon collapsible liquid container  offers  the  largest  weight  capacity  of  any  plastic collapsible liquid container (3,307 lbs.) for shipping and storage, combined with best-in-class liquid liners. TRI-K has increased its fill weights by as much as 200 pounds per unit, cutting costs by reducing the  number  of  containers  needed  to  move  the  same  amount  of  product.  The  stable  interlocking features of the containers also allow TRI-K to stack filled units higher than standard totes.

Most  suppliers  in  the  personal  are  industry  send  their  products to their customers in oneway  55  gallon  plastic  drums  or  in rigid one-way totes. Both options  present  storage  and  disposal  problems.  After  the  contents  of  the  totes  or  drums  are emptied,  the  plant  must  store them  until someone  comes  to  haul  them  away.  For  this  particular  customer,  TRI-K  sent  its  product in one-way totes.

“The customer had complained that  using  the  standard  oneway  tote  created  disposal  and  housekeeping problems at their plant.  The  empty  totes  would  accumulate  and  take  up  a  lot of valuable storage space. They can also fall over and create housekeeping issues,” said Fallon.

The  CHEP  container  collapses  easily  and  can  be stacked securely 15 units high at the customer site. The  reduced  footprint  makes  it  easier  for  TRI-K  to store collapsed empty totes at its site until they are ready to fill and ship; they can now store five times as many collapsed containers in the same space as one rigid one-way tote. TRI-K has also gained freight savings  on  the  return  trip,  and  can  better  manage its inventory of containers because, unlike its oneway totes, each unit is barcoded and scanned upon departure or arrival.

Disposable liners meet sanitation requirements

Re-use of the containers is made possible by their sanitary disposable liners. With the CHEP container, the customer empties the contents supplied in the container  by  TRI-K,  removes  the  plastic  bag,  and disposes of it.

“There is a high level of regulation in the personal care industry.  We  don’t  reuse  containers  because of the possibility of micro  contamination.  We  take great care to ensure product integrity,” explained Fallon.

TRI-K and its customer also value  the  fact  that  they  have  reduced their carbon footprints.

“For   TRI-K,   reusables   support the  sustainability  and  waste  reduction initiatives of our parent company.   And   our   customer   was  delighted  with  the  environmental  benefits,  too.  A  lot  of  companies  in  the  personal care  industry  are  talking  about  waste reduction, but not everyone knows how to go about it. Now  we  are  presenting  this  model  to  other  customers.  We  can  show  them  that  reusables  have  a  much smaller carbon footprint, are less expensive, and can meet their product’s safety requirements,”said Fallon.

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Case Study: Tri-K Industries | CHEP Honduras