A REFRESHING VIEW ON LOGISTICS IN BELGIUM

Koenraad Vangoidsenhoven

Expertise in logistics. This is what the Belgian Cooling and Freezing Industry (BVBVK) stands for and what the sector pursues. Result: each day hundreds of thousands of deep-frozen products and other foodstuffs are stored and transported in a highly professional manner. Their know-how ensures that this gigantic operation takes place successfully day in day out.

BVBVK has done an interview with one of their members , Luc Put – CEO of Colfridis, to demonstrate the professionalism of the Belgian Belgian Cooling and Freezing Industry.

YOU ATTACH GREAT IMPORTANCE TO SERVICE. WHAT DOES THAT MEAN FOR YOUR CUSTOMERS?

Luc Put, CEO Colfridis: “We assume that each customer is different. This is why we match our service to the needs of each individual customer. We provide a specific solution based on each specific request. We go to great lengths to make sure of this. ‘No’ is not a word in our dictionary. Our starting point is always: how can we realise what our customer wants?”

HOW DO YOU PUT THE CUSTOMER-ORIENTED APPROACH INTO PRACTICE?

LP: “We have a strong staff of some 700 employees. They are people who know the logistics business through and through and have a certain professional pride. They keep a very close eye on the quality of the products stored in our warehouse. The ideal temperature for deep-frozen products, the best storage conditions for bananas or the careful handling of eggs; our customers can rest assured when it comes to such matters. That is some- thing we make sure of.”

THE LOGISTICS SECTOR MUST HAVE FAR-REACHING FLEXIBILITY. HOW DO YOU SCORE HERE?

LP: “It is indeed our flexibility and efficiency that allow us to make the difference. Our operations run 24 hours a day. This gives the advantage that we can quickly respond to the needs of our customers, while also ensuring optimum staffing to be able to offer competitive prices. Another aspect with which we can make the difference is our IT system. It is designed on the basis of the needs of our user. It is particularly the flexible and customer-oriented way of thinking that gives us such a high score.”

“A story of growth Colfridis has enjoyed a turnover increase of 22% in the past five years. ”

YOU HAVE GROWN STRONGLY IN RECENT YEARS. HAVE YOU REACHED THE CEILING?

LP: “We are determined to continue to grow further. How are we going to do that? By continuing to excel in our logistical expertise. And by further refining our IT processes. We will also be grasping new opportunities with both hands. Another aspect that comes to mind is the e-commerce activities where we take care of the logistical process behind online shopping. We are al- ready doing this for one customer today, and it is a market in which we want to grow.”

WHICH PATH DO YOU WANT TO FOLLOW IN THE FUTURE?

LP: “You can summarise our ambitions for the future as ‘Lean

& Green’. We will also be going flat-out for even more efficiency along with a smaller impact on the environment. An impossible combination? Not at all. Look at our drivers, who, thanks to eco-driving, are producing fewer CO2 emissions while also cut- ting fuel costs. This is another example of the logistical expertise with which we want to continue to make the difference for our customers in the future.”

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© BVBVK – Belgian Logistic Association of Coldstores

 

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