Quantum puts eggs in Unitrans basket

Supply chain management and integrated logistics specialist Unitrans has clinched two substantial contracts – worth about R400-million over their combined duration – to supply specialised distribution and logistics services to Quantum Foods, specifically its animal feed supply and farm services business.

JSE-listed Quantum Foods focuses on animal feeds, eggs and layer livestock, and broilers.

The contract involves all of Quantum’s farm services business, including the regional transport of eggs for subsidiary business Nulaid, as well as a full suite of specialised logistics services, including the distribution of day old chicks and live hens through their full life cycle.

The transportation and feeding of the birds requires a range of customised equipment and specialised fleet, as well as the expertise to handle the birds healthily and safely. Among these services are the safe transportation of eggs to hatcheries, the collection and transportation of chicks to broiler farms, and the transportation of live birds to abattoirs.

In addition, Unitrans has been contracted to move point of lay hens for the Nulaid laying operation. Finally, Unitrans moves eggs from pack stations to market destinations in the Eastern Cape on behalf of Nulaid.

Ray Singh, Unitrans chief business development officer, says, “The farm services industry is a huge and highly specialised sector in terms of its supply chain and logistics requirements. Obviously the transportation of eggs and live birds is delicate and demands industry knowledge and the right equipment to take proper care of the cargo.

“Unitrans has been involved in the industry for over two decades and with Quantum Foods as a feed distribution partner since 2005. The award of this extended farm services contract, and the renewal of the existing contract we had with them, speaks to their confidence in our abilities and expertise in the sector.”

The contract will be serviced through a purpose-built and dedicated fleet of 64 vehicles. Unitrans will optimise fleet deployment through analysis and improvement of the current distribution network, reducing the total number of vehicles in operation, improving efficiencies and sustainably reducing costs.

“Our aim at Unitrans is to continuously improve our operations for our customers and partners,” says Singh. “For Quantum Foods, our goal is constant innovation in fleet design as well as in distribution and network planning and execution.”