KWL Logistics

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LCFD project companies:

 

  

Who benefited from the Low Carbon Freight Dividend, and how? This is one of a series of case studies that goes ‘behind the scenes’ to find out how the project worked for participating SMEs.
Here, Jason Flower, Director of Felixstowe-based KWL Logistics, explains what attracted his company to the Low Carbon Freight Dividend and why he got involved. We would like to thank him for his input.  The views expressed in our case studies are always those of the managers/companies interviewed and not necessarily those of the project team, the Haven Gateway or ERDF
T ell us about your company:

KWL Logistics specialises in worldwide logistics, with our services including forwarding, warehousing and distribution, complete door-to-door NVOCC operations for both FCL (full container load) and LCL (less than container load), and Customs documentation. The company was founded in 1997; it’s an independent, family-owned concern, and we have a small but very busy team of eight.

Do companies really want to be green?  

Of course we have some customers who are totally focused on price, but there are many others, particularly international companies, who are very concerned about their carbon footprint. Ben & Jerry’s was a major customer for us before they changed their manufacturing network and they totally went down the ‘green route’. They wanted to know how much carbon was created by shipping from the US to the UK, they wanted to minimise road mileage, and they wanted to find out exactly what the carbon miles were for each tub of ice cream. 

To me, being green is a positive thing. We should all be looking at reducing carbon; we can all save a little bit somewhere and we should all be trying to achieve that. But long-term there will be no alternative – major brands are positioning their warehouses and distribution centres for lower mileage, and they have entire teams working to reduce the environmental impact of their supply chains. Their logistics partners and other suppliers will have to follow suit. 

What attracted you to the Low Carbon Freight Dividend project?

The Low Carbon Freight Dividend project gives us a tremendous boost in moving boxes by rail – and now by feeder ship as well, since the project’s extension. An initiative like this is fantastic for encouraging and promoting ‘green’ choices. I think a lot of people hearing about LCFD might not believe it – that LCFD is offering real money and also help with promotion.

As a company, we have previously been granted funding for things such as taking on apprentices – but actually to be given, as part of our day-to-day business, hard cash back which goes straight into our bank account is unusual and it certainly is a great help.

Progress so far?  

We have moved 30 boxes supported by the LCFD so far. Also, we attended both the Freight Optimisation and Low Carbon Marketing workshops. When you only have a team of eight, two days is a lot of time to be out of the office – but it was well worth it. We were given facts and figures we weren’t aware of, and the content of the workshops was inspirational, with good, valid points made. It was definitely worth doing – and the benefits we gain from the LCFD will easily pay back those two days!

 Project statistics
  • Number of containers moved to date: 116
  • Grant received to date:£8,700
 
 How many containers do you hope to move with the support of the Low Carbon Freight Dividend?

With nearly two more years to run in the project, we will definitely move our full quota. With this funding, it is possible to move more containers via rail. And now that the project has been extended to include coastal shipping, we are looking at some of the business we do from Felixstowe to Scotland to see whether we can utilise that as well. Adding in feeder operations gives us more options, and we move quite a number of boxes to Scotland.

Are you getting a lot of interest from clients and potential clients?

For most customers, transport choices do come down to costs. But with LCFD, we can demonstrate that rail is a smart choice. We tell our customers: for any destination north of Birmingham, the LCFD support makes the rail choice very competitive compared with haulage. Being able to promote the ‘green route’ in this way is fantastically positive. 

Your views?

The Low Carbon Freight Dividend team promises that paperwork and admin are kept to a minimum – and that has certainly been the case. Signing up and getting involved in the project wasn’t a problem at all. The only problem was when the first payment came into our account very quickly, and at first we couldn’t work out what it was for! The workshops were excellent in explaining the whole process, and Lisa Brazier (LCFD project manager) and the team are always available if there are any issues to resolve. 

Savings to date  

Description

 

Total carbon savings

92,856

East of England carbon savings

47,834