QCS earns high marks for cold chain delivery service to stores in Southeast Louisiana
QCS Logistics began providing daily refrigerated delivery of fresh “grab-and-go” food items, pastries, beverages and more to 34 RaceTrac stores in Louisiana in the fall of 2014. The RaceTrac Petroleum, Inc., account was QCS Logistics’ first foray into cold chain delivery, a new vertical market for the regional transportation services company. In the past year, QCS Logistics’ third-party logistics contract with RaceTrac has expanded to include 43 convenience stores in Baton Rouge, New Orleans and Lafayette.
Logistics plays a vital role in the customer experience and sales at retail stores such as RaceTrac, where customers expect fresh items that are delivered on time every day. In addition to daily delivery to stores in Greater New Orleans, Baton Rouge and Lafayette, QCS provides ongoing support to the RaceTrac Logistics Team regarding cost savings and route optimization. Overseeing the RaceTrac account is Project Manager Lavale Washington.
Cold chain delivery is the delivery of products that need to be continuously temperature monitored. Breaking into the cold chain delivery market requires extensive pre-planning, appropriate monitoring to ensure consistency of temperature during transport, and having contingencies in place in the event a truck or its refrigeration system breaks down. QCS Business Development Manager Jason Burns recently discussed the learning curve and lessons learned when QCS first incorporated cold chain delivery service into its offerings.
RaceTrac’s fresh food offering combines quality and convenience with a wide variety of great-tasting options delivered fresh daily, including sandwiches, wraps, salads, fruit and pastries. Each of the more than 40 convenience stores must be stocked and ready for its customers in the early morning, which means both the stores and their logistics partners have the responsibility of catering to the world’s early birds. A regional carrier with dedicated cold storage facility at its warehouse, QCS is able to make one daily delivery per store instead of the store managing eight or 10 different deliveries from different suppliers.
QCS has received praise for its employees’ professionalism and performance serving RaceTrac. RaceTrac Senior Supply Chain Manager Dusty Engleman shared positive feedback last fall from all 38 store managers served at the time by QCS Logistics during a recent training: “They made mention that the drivers are polite, their night managers have developed relationships with them, and they haven’t run into any issues with not doing what’s asked,” he said. “When issues come up, Lavale addresses them in a timely manner and the situation is quickly resolved.
“I was thoroughly pleased at what I heard and observed yesterday. Kudos to QCS!,” Engleman added.
As RaceTrac’s presence in Southeast Louisiana continues to grow, QCS is heeding the call to continue as a loyal partner that consistently meets the company’s needs. With RaceTrac's growth from 38 to 43 convenience stores in the Baton Rouge, New Orleans and Lafayette markets, QCS has demonstrated its proficiency in cold chain delivery and dedication to process and efficiency, earning high marks for customer service and professionalism.
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