Halo, the new multi-temperature fresh produce handling facility at DP World London Gateway has officially pledged to save over 1.5 million kilos of CO2 during the course of its 2019 operations.
The SH Pratt-owned site officially opened in November 2018, promising to help revolutionise the fresh produce industry, and Halo managing director, Gavin Knight, has stayed true to his word as the business has quickly delivered reductions of up to 48-hours in the supply chain process.
Explaining the CO2-savings announcement, Knight commented: “Normally fresh produce is brought straight into port and then taken on to another inland facility to add-value.
“We’re the first operation of our kind in London Gateway to seriously invest in challenging this woefully inefficient model, and minimise the carbon-footprint of fresh produce logistics at every stage possible.
“On average, a container lorry consumes nine miles to-the-gallon, generating 1.38 kilos of carbon emissions per mile. By processing goods at the port-of-entry, Halo is removing a 236-mile trip inland for up to 100 containers every single week.
“This means the eradication of over 1.2 million ‘food miles,’ or 1.5 million kilos of carbon emissions in a year.”
This goal is no small feat for one of the UK’s newest and largest state-of-the-art multi-temperature product-handling facilities, housing 110,000sq ft of chilled, frozen, ripening and added value space.
Located just eight miles from the M25, Halo is already being heralded as a ‘game-changer,’ and its environmental ambitions extend far beyond simply reducing food miles. As Gavin notes, the facility has also achieved award-winning status for its building design and construction.
“In November 2018, Halo received ‘Planet Mark’ sustainability certification for achieving a 16% reduction in carbon emissions during its construction,” he continues.
“We achieved this through various means, including making use of sand dredged from the River Thames during pre-construction of the port to raise the building’s ground level, using steel instead of concrete for ground beams, and by installing flooring made from 20-44% recycled content.
“In addition, our ammonia cold-storage centre is the most environmentally-effective of its kind, and we also operate our own on-site rainwater collection and effluent management plants.”
All of this activity is not only ethically admirable, but also makes good business sense, adds Knight.
“Our retail partners and their customers are increasingly demanding strong green credentials from their suppliers. I’m proud to say that by reducing carbon emissions in both construction and day-to-day logistics, Halo is making a vital contribution to facilitating trade in the most efficient ways possible.
“CO2 pollution and the time taken handling fresh produce has a huge impact on the environment, so anything we can do to eradicate excess levels is good news for the planet’s wellbeing. The food industry makes a living from the land, so we have a responsibility to give back to the planet.”
Looking to the future, Halo will be issuing quarterly CO2 savings and reduction statements to keep its environmental objectives at the forefront of its business strategy and publicly share progress with its stakeholders.