French fruit and vegetable supplier Océane has revealed massive carbon savings as a result of its ongoing partnership with LPR. A division of Euro Pool Group, LPR has managed the entire pallet pool for the major FMCG cooperative since 2012. LPR’s commitment to CSR was a key factor when the Nantes-based supplier appointed the leading pallet pooling provider.
Sustainability is something Océane takes very seriously. Since its creation in 1993, the company has worked hard to bring together market gardeners to maintain high quality produce and secure a long-term future for its members. The cooperative’s business decisions have always been guided by its commitment to social, environmental and economic values, so it was logical that Océane chose to work with suppliers that have the same concerns.
Océane’s 71 market gardener members produce more than 85,000 tonnes of fresh fruit and vegetables each year with a turnover of €114 million. LPR uses a mixture of the 80×120 pallets and 100×120 pallets to manage a total of 150,000 pallet movements every year. LPR’s pallet services have so far reduced Océane’s CO2 emissions by 20%.
Dominique Calais, director general at Océane, said: "The cooperative is there to produce and sell quality fruit and vegetables. But that wouldn’t be any good if we couldn’t deliver them properly. We therefore needed to be sure to have the best quality pallet in the right place at the right time, with a guarantee that forests are being preserved and the working conditions of our suppliers are fair, which LPR is able to offer.”
LPR is an FMCG specialist and is able to offer a number of services which fit perfectly within the constraints of the fruit and vegetable sector. Factors include seasonal peaks and changes in weather conditions which require total flexibility on the part of suppliers.
LPR delivers pallets to Océane’s market gardeners every day with growers using pallets to hold 250 different varieties of fruit and vegetable. The cooperative’s transport department, consisting of a 16-strong fleet, collect loaded pallets and return them to its 13,500 sq metres warehouse located in La Chevrolière.
Orders are then prepared for transport to more than 200 destinations, including major retailers in the fruit and vegetable sector, industry and wholesalers, as well as export to a range of European countries. In the majority of cases, produce picked in the morning is shipped the same evening.
In addition to LPR’s financial and IT solutions, Océane was impressed by the number of accreditations and certifications LPR has achieved in the past 20 years. In 1996, it was one of the first companies in the logistics sector to obtain ISO 9000 certification. In 2010, it obtained the PEFC certification entitling it to publicise its contribution to the sustainable management of forests and to the responsible consumption of wood as a resource.
In 2013, LPR went carbon neutral. This was primarily a result of the reduction of empty journeys and the proximity of LPR depots to the facilities of its customers, thus keeping the travel distance to a minimum.
In addition, EcoVadis, which rates the company’s social responsibility every year, with scores on its environmental, social, ethical and responsible-purchasing stances, has placed LPR in the top 10 of all suppliers assessed.
Calais added: “Raw materials used, sustainable management of these materials, good working conditions for personnel and environmental commitment – LPR ticks all of the boxes!"