Chep, the supply chain solutions company, is delivering its pallets to Austria Pet Food, a manufacturer of high-quality dog food and cat food. The fast-growing company produces pet foods Made in Austria for the private labels of the leading European retail and pet food trade. The switch to Chep pallets was due to problems with white exchange pallets returned from Central and Eastern European markets. Quality problems and lost pallets led to rising logistics costs.
“Before we started using Chep pallets many of the pallets we put into the exchange system were not returned. In addition, the quality of the returned pallets was often too poor for re-use. We had to replace about 30 to 35 percent of the pallets we delivered to certain markets. The exchange system for these markets became increasingly more expensive. Some of our logistics partners even refused to work with exchange pallets in these markets,” says Bernd Berghofer, CEO of Austria Pet Food.
The company opted for Chep pallet pooling already two years ago to supply products to certain Central and East European markets. Today, Austria Pet Food uses around 30,000 Chep Euro pallets and 9,000 display pallets a year, which makes up 35 to 40 percent of the company’s total pallet volume.
Austria Pet Food has been a producer of high-quality canned wet food for pets since 2012. The company’s success is based on the high production efficiency of its state-of-the-art 9,000 square meter large plant in Pöttelsdorf, a town southeast of Vienna. The production facility is one of the most modern in Europe. It is also one of the most automated canning factories and fills around 600 cans a minute. The company currently produces 65,000 tons of pet food a year. It opted for Chep’s pallet pooling system already two years ago for supplying products to certain Central and East European markets. Today, Austria Pet Food uses around 30,000 Chep Euro pallets and 9,000 display pallets annually, which accounts for 35 to 40 percent of the company’s total pallet volume.
Pet food as a growth industry
Pet food is a big business all over Europe. According to the European Pet Food Industry Association (FEDIAF), there are around 141 million animals living in 62 million households in the EU. FEDIAF has also established that this number is increasing constantly every year. The upward trend is also evident in the countries of the European Free Trade Association (EFTA), including Russia and Turkey. While some consumers in these markets still feed their pets with food leftovers, more and more people, especially in urban areas, are now buying prepared feed.