Colian Group is one of the leading food industry companies on Polish market. It is active in four market segments: sweets, beverages, culinary and ice cream. Colian constantly strengthens its market position and steadily grows its brand portfolio. The group has recently acquired Elizabeth Shaw company - a British luxury chocolate products supplier - and the Irish company- Lily O'Brien’s. Colian regards acquisitions as a part of its further business development plan.
There are three Colian distribution centers in Poland. Sweets and spices are distributed from Kostrzyń Wielkopolski, beverages- from Opatówek near Kalisz and the raw materials from the facility in Mały Piątek. Colian Logistic company belongs to Colian Group. The company is responsible for the storage and distribution of the Colian Group’s and external clients’ products . Colian Logistic also has storage and distribution outsourcing in its scope of services.
Effective supply chain management is crucial to maintain dynamic business development pace. And there is no shortage of challenges with such extensive activities. Among the key challenges are those common for the entire sector today, such intensifying market competition, rising prices of materials and packaging and the current situation on the labor market. The problem with recruiting new employees is an important factor affecting the distribution, storage processes and the pallet management.
"In the past, we operated in the field of returnable packaging management and in the field of traditional white pallets. And with such a complex infrastructure that we have today, with many production plants and warehouses, we generated a lot of traffic and too many transfers between warehouses, between plants and warehouses, and between plants and our customers. " - emphasizes Tomasz Kosik, President of the Board at Colian Logistic.
In practice, it meant that we had manage balances with carriers and recipients to track the turnover of pallets. It was a complex process, which required the involvement of a disproportionately large number of people – both from the warehouse workers and the administration and sometimes top managers side.
"We were looking for a solution that would help us manage pallets better to get rid of the problems associated with pallet management." - recalls Daniel Nowicki, Sales and Development Director.
Another very important aspect is quality, which is the key for the food industry. For the managers of Colian Group's production facilities low pallet quality level was unacceptable.
"For this reason, some of our pallets fell out of the market and we had to buy new ones. Some of the pallets were also damaged beyond repair, so we also had to replace and re-launch them. " - explains the President.
Cost reduction, process optimization and simplification
CHEP receives the pallets directly from Colian customers and, as part of its own network of service centers, delivers the pallets to the group's production facilities. CHEP also takes care of the pallet movement management. The outsourcing of pallet management allows Colian reduce the costs associated with the purchase, storage, repair and ongoing handling of pallets.
Cooperation with CHEP has allowed us to optimize the processes related to loading and unloading of pallets in warehouses, as well as has guaranteed delivery of carriers and their reliable quality assessment. Thanks to this, we can focus on the business activities which are the most important for us. " - says Daniel Nowicki.
One of the most important aspects is also the reduction of transport costs generated by the movement between warehouses and factories.
"We are talking about additional loading and unloading, as well as additional administrative activities that have been eliminated." - emphasizes Director Colian Logistic.
In total, all warehouses serviced by Colian Logistic have 100k pallets for over 60k m2 of space in centers located in Poland. The company offers transport, spedition, warehousing services and is today one of the largest CHEP pallet carriers, which completed 27,000 CHEP pallet transport throughout the country in 2019.
Demand picks coverage
"It is important that CHEP pooling ensures secure platform delivery in conditions of increased demand for some products, i.e. picks. CHEP pooling service provides the required number of platforms to handle these picks. And not just in “high season”, but always when the customer needs it. " - explains Izabella Maczkowska-Ciborowska from CHEP Polska.
Thanks to its network of 240 service centers throughout Europe, CHEP customers can also be sure that continuity of supply will be maintained, even in the conditions of sudden market changes. "This scale of operations means that we are able to respond quickly to sudden changes in demand and manage deliveries from alternative locations. Even in such a dynamically changing market environment that we observe today. " – adds Izabella Maczkowska-Ciborowska from CHEP Polska.
In the context of cooperation between CHEP and Colian, the largest increase in 2019 was recorded as part of Last Mile Solution (solutions for the last mile), where pickup of CHEP half pallets increased by 110% Y2Y in the last year, and a quarter pallet by 80 % Y2Y.
"Cooperation between CHEP and Colian began 10 years ago, and its area is constantly expanding, and Colian was the first large CHEP customer in Poland. We are all the more pleased that every day we support both Colian's main business activity and the development of new areas, such as the ice cream sector, because we see how our long-term cooperation results in solutions that benefit both sides. " - she adds.