It plays a pivotal role when it comes to keeping many of the UK's biggest supermarkets stocked around the clock, and yet Boughey Distribution may not sound familiar to you. Indeed, the company is relied on by household names such as Princes, Typhoo and AB World Foods to store, consolidate and distribute their products to the local shops and supermarkets we all regularly use. With a fleet of over 300 lorries and 95,000 pallets in storage across its two sites in Cheshire, Boughey is the first choice of delivery firm for the biggest food manufacturing companies.
Boughey has expanded rapidly over the last ten years; from a milk distribution business serving a local farm co-operative to one of the UK's key food hauliers. Some of this success can surely be attributed to Boughey's ability to provide a consolidation service, as well as simple pallet storage and delivery. The supermarkets demand deliveries that are as efficient as possible, which means full vehicles with just the right mix of goods. To achieve this, Boughey will typically load vehicles with pallets from up to ten different suppliers, even to the extent of building new pallets, in order to get just what the supermarket client needs that day at its particular regional distribution centre. Boughey can even re-pack and re-label goods to suit its customers' specific requirements. Boughey offers everything from a five-day service down to next-day delivery.
Boughey's main site in Wardle covers 22 hectares and has 15 warehouses. Operations rely on a fleet of 50 Toyota Tonero counterbalance trucks for long-distance outdoor material handling and vehicle loading/unloading.
Most of the warehouses have large canopied marshalling areas in which orders are assembled and a trailer is brought to the warehouse that will supply most of the outgoing goods. The remainder is brought to the trailer using Tonero counterbalanced trucks from the appropriate warehouses by the individual driver who has responsibility for that trailer.
Boughey has had a long-standing relationship with Toyota through local dealers but has now consolidated and expanded its fleet under a new rental agreement with Toyota Material Handling Europe (TMHE).
They have tried competitor trucks with hydro static transmission, but opted for the hydrodynamic Toneros. They use a wide variety of drivers including agency staff, and with the Tonero they can just 'get on and go,' as the controls and driving experience are familiar. The long distances demanded by the application also favour hydrodynamic trucks.
Paul Brimelow, in charge of Boughey's vehicles, values TMHE's loyalty, support and service. He has rationalised Boughey's outdoor fleet, shedding unnecessary forklifts and acquiring new Toneros to a set 'Boughey spec'. All trucks are now rented and serviced under one agreement with TMHE.
"To me, uptime is what it's all about. Everything we've got is utilised so we have nothing parked-up. I am happiest dealing directly with the trucks' manufacturer, and that's what I get dealing with TMHE."
Toyota SAS (System of Active Stability) and Toyota I_Site are key parts of the package. In the last 15 months Boughey has seen forklift damage costs reduce by of over two-thirds, and this is expected to fall further still. This reduction has been achieved by a combination of measurement and management. Toyota I_Site provides more than just data - a Toyota consultant works with Boughey to extract the most useful information and apply it to lower their operating costs. Toyota I_Site has also helped to promote a more proactive, less reactive maintenance regime to save money.
Chris Foster, warehouse operations manager adds, "As well as SAS working to keep the load and truck safe, our trucks have speed limiters and load weight indicators so our drivers know they are always working within safe parameters. If the drivers aren't happy we know we can expect more damage so we were careful to consult before introducing the new Toneros. I think our damage trend speaks for itself."