Thomas Ridley invests £3.6m to help double its chilled offer

Thomas Ridley Foodservice has announced the construction of a new £3.6m 25,000 square foot freezer facility that is due to be operational by September 2017.

The new site will have volume for over 2,000 pallets, thereby increasing the wholesaler’s current frozen sales volume capacity by over 50%.

The Suffolk-based business’ new store will also include voice picking, warehouse management and multi-order picking onto electronic trucks.

John Hepworth, operations director, said: “Service levels will remain industry-leading thanks to voice system usage, while the cost of order fulfilment will reduce thanks to multi-ordering picking system.

“Chilled sales volume capacity will also double as Thomas Ridley will convert the current freezer facility into a chilled store. During this depot upgrade extra space for ambient storage will also be created.”

This development coincides with Thomas Ridley’s 100-year anniversary as a limited company.

Hepworth added: “The new 25,000 sq ft freezer store will significantly improve our frozen offering and will also allow us to double our chilled proposition. This will ensure that we can provide our end user customers with a far greater range of both chilled and frozen products.

“It also represents a significant opportunity for current, as well as potential suppliers, in that we can now provide an even faster and more cost effective route to market. Both of these investments are integral to our overall 10-year plan that will allow us the capacity to double our sales volume by 2027.”

The building housing the new freezer store will also include purpose-built offices to which current head office staff based in another site in Suffolk will transfer when complete.

The venture comes two years after Thomas Ridley opened a regional distribution centre in Kent.


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