TRANSPORTATION AND DISTRIBUTION

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We operate one of the largest fleets of refrigerated vehicles in the country. Our fleet delivers to more than 160,000 outlets, including grocery and mass merchandise retailers, hotels and restaurants, convenience stores, schools, hospitals and other institutions.

As part of our overall greenhouse gas reduction goal, we set a goal in 2008 to reduce our distribution fleet’s CO2e emissions by 50,000 metric tons by 2013 – a goal we surpassed by the end of 2010. We revised the goal in 2012 to reduce distribution emissions 95,000 metric tons by 2020.

 2020 Goal20082009201020112012201320142015
Distribution Emission Reductions
(metric tons)
22,754
(vs. baseline)
25,041
(vs. baseline)
39,732
(vs. baseline)
50,919
(vs. baseline)
74,219
(vs. baseline)
82,480
(vs. baseline)
109,172
(vs. baseline)
113,749
(vs. baseline)
143,430
(vs. baseline)
Actuals
(CO2 equivalent)
 512,470
(metric tons)
497,778
(metric tons)
486,592
(metric tons)
463,291
(metric tons)
455,030
(metric tons)
428,339
(metric tons)
423,761
(metric tons)
396,498
(metric tons)

To meet our goals, we created a Smart Fleet initiative to optimize routes, invest in new technology and equipment, and train drivers to drive more safely and maximize fuel economy. Our employees have also been trained to minimize energy use – while keeping products at the optimum temperatures – by using proper refrigerated airflow management practices.


Advanced Technology

As one of the largest purchasers of refrigerated delivery trucks, we use our purchasing power to push for new, cleaner and more efficient technology.  Our partnerships often result in cutting-edge technology applied to our business, such as our 2010 pilot of a prototype hybrid-electric-powered truck and refrigeration system that reduced emissions and waste deanTruck

In 2007, we began adopting cold-plate refrigeration technology in earnest to replace mechanical refrigeration systems in our trucks. Employing the latest in cold-plate technology reduced our GHG emissions by approximately 18,000 pounds per truck as we replace older diesel power truck refrigeration units. As of the end of 2011, more than 50% of our truck fleet uses cold-plate refrigeration technology. 

exclamation In 2012, we began adding tire pressure monitoring systems to our tractor trucks which, unlike consumer vehicles, are rarely equipped with such systems. These monitoring systems complement the use of automatic inflation systems already in use on more than 50% of our refrigerated trailers. Monitoring systems indicate immediately when a tire has low pressure, allowing drivers to react quickly and improve fuel economy and tire life. We will continue to look for ways to add these monitoring systems to our delivery trucks in the future.

Compressed Natural Gas 

cngLogo In 2011, Dean Foods added five heavy-duty tractor trucks to its fleet powered by compressed natural gas. The tractor trucks, which are used by our Alta Dena® brand in Southern California, produce 27 percent less greenhouse gas emissions compared to traditional diesel vehicles. Since the rollout, we have continued to partner with the manufacturer to make advances, and we expect to purchase more CNG-powered vehicles as more advanced engine options become available. For more information, read the full press release.

Real-Time Data

We’ve also invested in on-board monitors and routing software that enable us to better manage deliveries. Today, all delivery trucks and tractor trucks in our fleet employ these on-board monitors. This combined technology has assisted in saving fuel and significantly improving the efficiency of our delivery resources.

The real-time data monitoring also supports our driver scorecard program, which we activated in 2011. The program gives all 6,300 of our drivers and supervisors a tool to improve efficiency through better communication. The scorecard, which compiles data already tracked by our real-time transportation management system in each truck, displays more than 25 measurements for each driver relating to time management, driving behavior and route performance. Drivers and supervisors meet regularly to discuss their scorecard and opportunities for performance improvements.

 

With the completed spin-off of our WhiteWave business and the sale of our Morningstar business in 2013, all sustainability metrics, going back to 2007, have been recalculated to reflect the current structure of Dean Foods.


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