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CO-WRITTEN / PARTNER | Staff Reporter, Australia
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A sustainability journey that starts at the farm

The pressure for quick service restaurant businesses to create more sustainable supply chains is increasing.

Limit Farms, based in Gatton, Queensland, have built their business and strong reputation with customers on supplying quality produce to market, supported by HACCP and FreshCare certification. Limit Farms value the benefits of having a sustainable supply chain, which is why they choose CHEP reusable plastic containers to pack and move their produce.

“CHEP reusable containers, be they bins or RPCs, are supplied to us clean and sterilised, so that there’s no contamination issues, or bacterial or biological problems. It also saves labour cost and improves cash flow,” Limit Farms owner Steve Kluck said.

Kluck also highlighted the benefits of improved produce shelf life and faster cool down times through the ventilated design of the platforms. In addition, other benefits included improvements in truck utilisation, with the ability to stack RPCs higher than cartons, and a significant reduction in product damage, due to the sturdy design of the RPC.

A recent survey of end users indicated substantial time savings, as employees do not have to make multiple trips to compactors and bins during the day for the removal of waste cardboard, saving up to 2-3 hours per week on average.

The pressure for quick service restaurant (QSR) businesses to create more sustainable supply chains is increasing, with leading brands now looking at their B2B packaging as an opportunity to further drive their sustainability initiatives.

“The public has placed new demands on the Fast Food industry and are expecting these brands to be sustainable not only in the packing they use to serve you in, but also show leadership in developing a sustainable supply chain at the backdoor. The next generation of business leaders are mindful of how they purchase their products and where waste can be eliminated out of the supply chain,” Lachlan Feggans, Director of Sustainability at Brambles, said.

Recently, Barron’s recognised Brambles as a leader in sustainable business practices and the second most sustainable international company in the world. MRA Consulting Group states that Australia’s single use cardboard waste equates to about 1.1 million tonnes of waste each year. Most of the fresh produce used in the QSR industry is packed in single use
cardboard boxes, with their only journey being to the restaurant storage area with no further use. This cardboard can easily be eliminated from the supply chain.

RPCs for fresh produce can help extend the benefits QSR’s currently enjoy with the supply of other lines in reusable containers, such as milk, bread and poultry. In many cases, the impact for QSR chains to convert from single use cardboard may be cost neutral, or better.

What can be done now?
Growers, processors, and distributors can eliminate more single-use packaging by using reusable platforms, like crates (RPCs), to deliver and receive restaurant supplies. The journey ends at the QSR, with considerable commercial and sustainable benefits, that are easy to implement. Profit and Planet are no longer a compromise.

(Speak to us today or visit the CHEP stand on June 20th at the QSR Media Sandhurst Fine Foods Conference & Awards 2019. Click here to see how you can benefit from an Environmental Impact Analysis. See how Reusable Plastic Containers work in supply chains here. For more information visit www.chep.com)

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