Posts Tagged “Allen Lund Company”

Keeping It Fresh: Beyond COVID-19

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By Nora Trueblood

We have been inundated with information, some mostly correct, some not, specific to COVID-19. I don’t know about you, but I am quite exhausted by it all. Every one of us is on a different journey because of the pandemic, and I personally continue to recognize that a person’s opinion is just that…their opinion. I do think it is safe to say, that we are all trying to manage and figure out our own journey through life as we deal with COVID-19.
Keeping it Fresh is distributed to many of our perishable/produce customers, and I wanted to take the opportunity in this issue to bring to your attention some of the great philanthropy that is taking place during this crazy time. Many of these growers/shippers work with the Allen Lund Company in everyday business, but many also donate food to Navidad en el Barrio, a project that has existed since 1972, and one that ALC has supported since 2004.
So, a hearty thank you from the Allen Lund Company and the recipients of these generous donations to:

We still have quite a road ahead, and we wish all of our industry friends the best as we maneuver through our current challenges.

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Nora Trueblood is Director of Marketing and Communications, Allen Lund Company Corporate of La Canada, CA. She began her career with ALC in 2002 as Director of Marketing & Communications. Prior to joining the company, Trueblood worked as the event manager with the Montrose Arts Council and Alpine Dance in Montrose, CO, had her own production and event planning company and spent 7 years with Lorimar Television.

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Keeping It Fresh: Putting Drivers Back in the Driver’s Seat

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By Derek Robinson

If you ask any truck driver out there, especially produce drivers, what is one of the biggest headaches they face each and every day you will end up with a resounding answer across the room…”Hours of service!”

A truck driver has always needed to be part mechanic, dispatcher, and accountant but with the HOS in place today they need to be part calculus professor as well. At least that is the way it seems when you look at ELD’s or log books and work out all of the math and hope a DOT inspector does not find a mistake while he is looking over your shoulder.

Since perishable shippers rely on reefer service, September 29th will be a great day. Drivers will be given a little more control of their destiny, and shippers will have more open windows for pick up and deliveries. The Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA) listened to owner operators, carriers and fleet managers and are offering more flexibility while maintaining the highest safety standards. What does this mean for drivers?

Short-Haul Exception: The maximum allowable workday is changing from 12 to 14 hours and the distance is extending from 100 air-mile radius to 150 air-mile radius. As any produce driver out there knows when it comes to multiple sheds, this will be a major benefit!

Adverse Driving Conditions Exception: This can extend the duty day by two hours if adverse driving conditions are encountered. Snow, ice, sleet, fog or unusual road or traffic conditions that were not known prior to beginning the duty day or immediately before beginning driving after a qualifying rest break or sleeper berth period, or immediately prior to dispatching the driver.

If you are subject to a 30-minute break requirement: This requirement can now be satisfied by taking an on-duty, not driving break, in addition to an off-duty break. After an 8-hour driving period there will be a few options, including combination of activities as long as the 30 minutes are consecutive and satisfied by time. These options include: off-duty; in sleeper berth; and off-duty, not driving.

Sleeper Berth Provision: This allows drivers to split the 10-hour off duty period after meeting certain requirements: One period is at least 2 hours long, the other involves at least 7 consecutive hours in the sleeper berth, both must add to at least 10 hours. When paired together, neither period will count against the 14-hour driving window. An 8-hour sleeper berth period by itself can no longer be excluded from the 14-hour driving window.

To all of our produce professionals out there, here is to putting the drivers and shippers back in the driver’s seat! September 29th cannot come fast enough.

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Derek Robinson is a business development specialist in the Savannah office and has been with the Allen Lund Company since 2015. Robinson attended Savannah Technical College, specializing in Aviation Structural Mechanics.

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Preventing Rejection of Refrigerated Loads – Part II

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By Jennifer Brearley Transportation Broker, ALC Richmond

In Tuesday’s article, we discussed some of the most important things to consider when selecting a carrier for sensitive, refrigerated loads. In addition to carrier vetting, it is also crucial to ensure that hot product is not being loaded into the trailer and equipment failure or human error are avoided. Below are some tips that could help you steer clear of these issues leading to rejected loads and claims.
Prevent hot loads before they get on the truck.

  1. Refer trailers are not designed to set product temperature. They are designed to maintain it.
  2. Freshly picked loads that sit on the dock in extreme heat waiting to be loaded may be out of temperature tolerance at loading. According to the article, The Keys to Preventing Rejected Loads in Refrigerated Transportation, “as much as 32% of all cargo is loaded at the wrong temperature. Poor loading practices like these can result in loads spoiling in transit if the temperature is incorrect. No matter how chilled the reefer is, the temperature is going to rise – this causes condensation, which results in spoilage.”
  3. Ensure the driver understands proper pulping practices. Prior to loading, and during unloading drivers should pulp and record temperatures of at least every other pallet of the product loaded on to their trailer.
  4. Drivers should be instructed not to accept the warm products at the shipper. Once they sign for it, they are responsible for it.
  5. Document all communication with the driver and the shipper regarding temperature discrepancies prior to loading.
  6. In transit pulping when possible is preferred as well. Newer refrigerated trailers have advanced temperature monitoring that will notify the driver and dispatch if something is wrong which is helpful in today’s world where most loads are sealed.

Avoid equipment failure and human error.

  1. Proper routine maintenance is a must. Loading an unknown carrier with a sensitive product is a huge risk. The vast majority of loads hauled pick up and deliver without incident. A temperature claim resulting from poorly maintained equipment will result in unrecoverable costs and damaged relationships. Ask drivers you are unfamiliar with about their maintenance routines. You will be able to tell pretty quickly how diligent they are about it. There are up to 200 possible alarm codes in newer reefer units. That can be 200 potential problems. Add to that a damaged chute, leaking trailer, or damaged seal and the risk of loss multiplies.
  2. Incorrect unit settings can happen for a number of reasons. Human errors can result in a ruined load. -20°F instead of 20°F are vastly different and such errors result in a disaster for the cargo inside the trailer. Regular communication from pick up through delivery is crucial. It is easy to assume that the temperature today is the same as it was yesterday. This is a dangerous assumption.

Educate yourself on the products your customer ships, the methods the shipper utilizes for loading trucks, and the general function of refrigerated trailers. This is the most important part of the vetting process. In order to effectively communicate with the carrier, you have to know what you are talking about.
Rejected loads are undoubtedly something we want to avoid. While these vetting processes may not prevent every rejected load, they can certainly help to lower if not eliminate the avoidable ones. (Part I was published on July 28th.)

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Jennifer Brearley began working for the Allen Lund Company in February of 2019 as a transportation broker. She joined the company with five years of domestic and international shipping experience. Brearley attended Western Governors University and received a BA in Interdisciplinary Studies.

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Preventing Rejection of Refrigerated Loads – Part I

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It’s the middle of summer and 97° here in Virginia and throughout the country. The summer demand for refrigerated fresh products under tight deadlines is at its peak. Allen Lund Company specializes in moving this type of product, successfully transporting thousands of produce loads a year. But, what happens when your load is rejected? This is one of the most frustrating challenges in refrigerated transportation. Rejected loads can lead to insurance claims, contract loss, and a damaged reputation.

How can we prevent avoidable cases of rejected loads and the claims associated with them?

Vet the carriers and drivers moving the loads. Allen Lund Company’s database employs a rigorous vetting process. There is a wealth of resources available when choosing a carrier to represent you.

  1. Verify that the chosen carrier has reefer breakdown AND spoilage coverage on their policy.
  2. Seek product exclusions from the carrier’s insurance company.
  3. Refer to internal notes regarding the carrier’s communication practices, past performance, and on-time percentage. A late perishable load rarely works out well.
  4. Consider known history the carrier has moving refrigerated product.
  5. Ask the potential carrier/driver the right questions. Verify that they are experienced in moving temperature-sensitive products.
  6. Trust but verify. You will come across the good, the bad, and the ugly. Take it all into account when considering whether to do business with a carrier.

In addition to ensuring that you entrust your load with the right carrier, it is also important to prevent hot loads before they get on the truck as well as avoid equipment failure and human error. On Tuesday, August 4 in Keeping it Fresh article, we will continue to discuss the best ways to avoid these problems and guarantee your refrigerated load makes it to the final destination unharmed. 

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Jennifer Brearley began working for the Allen Lund Company in February of 2019 as a transportation broker. She joined the company with five years of domestic and international shipping experience. Brearley attended Western Governors University and received a BA in Interdisciplinary Studies.

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Allen Lund’s Bob Rose Addresses Key Trucking Issues

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  1. When COVID-19 hit a lot of businesses switched from restaurants and other foodservice to retail.  What are your biggest challenges making the transition from a logistics stand point? 

When the pandemic hit, ALC was very busy and actually increased our business because we are deeply imbedded in the food and beverage space.  Our customers were required to help feed even more people than ever before.  Our foodservice businesses were of course more stressed as restaurants, schools and big venues were closed or cancelled, so we helped by working on other strategies with our customers and worked to pivot into retail whenever possible.

2. How much of your perishable freight is handled by owner-operators and small fleets and do you see this changing at all?

We have a mix of owner-operators and smaller fleets as well as some of the biggest trucking names in the produce industry hauling loads for Allen Lund Company.  In order to service our clients, we need all of our carrier relationships to work together to solve the complex transportation issues for our shipper clients.  In general, the trucking industry is made up of wonderful people that follow the American dream of owning their own businesses and I hope that doesn’t change.  The one thing I hope people realized through this crisis is that all of the drivers across the U.S. have kept the flow of goods moving – without these drivers this pandemic would have been much worse – so thanks again to all those drivers out there!

3. What trends do you see in the coming months regarding truck and driver availability, as well as freight rates?

Well with what’s going on in the economy we should not see a driver shortage in the near term.  We do not see the purchasing of many trucks right now, as class 8 sales are way down.  Freight rates have been all over the place this year, and we all want to make sure the trucking companies stay in business and are treated fairly.  However, we do live in a supply demand market – which can really be difficult to maneuver through during these major disruptions.  Overall we see this year as a roller coaster, but feel truck rates will be going up later in the year and into next year as we hope the economy gets back on its feet.

4. What are the biggest changes you have seen in recent years making trucking more efficient such a communication, dock scheduling, etc.

You know everyone is talking about data, but truly accurate data that tells a good story is still a few miles away.  We all like getting packages in just a few days so the systems to make that happen will require trucking to continue to change, but that change will be substantial as we work out all the kinks.  We need all of our carriers to get on a network of some sort so they can all play in the successes of this new market we are entering in.  It’s funny that you mention dock scheduling as our AlchemyTMS has solved major issues for our customers – carriers and shippers with that software module.  The more we can automate systems that help our carriers and shippers alike, less manpower and frustration exists – which is a great thing.  We have spent a lot of time and money to develop systems to make sure our customers get their products to market safely, secured and on time.

Bob Rose is Vice President, National Produce Sales, for the Allen Lund Company.  While ALC is based in LaCanada, CA, Bob is based in the San Francisco office and has been with company 34 years.

Allen Lund Company is a national third-party transportation broker with nationwide offices and over 500 employees working with shippers and carriers across the nation to arrange for dry, refrigerated (specializing in produce), and flatbed freight. Additionally, the Allen Lund Company has a Logistics & Software division, ALC Logistics, as well as an International division. 

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Resiliency vs Fear

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By Bob Rose

Vice President, National Produce Sales

Allen Lund Company

My daughter is a smart and caring teacher of young children in Seattle. She has been out of work for months and is doing fine, but obviously concerned about the job she loves.

Teachers’ salaries deserve more debate, but we acknowledge the societal importance. While I understand some companies have no choice but to lay off their workforce, what is surprising is the substantial number of layoffs and even changes in compensation plans for those employees in essential businesses that our society depends on.

The first quarter of 2020 was difficult for the produce industry and transportation providers like the Allen Lund Company. We are proud of how our company remained loyal to our customer base while truck rates skyrocketed. We added people to our staff to fill in key spots, quickly adapted new protocols to maintain clean and safe work environments, and we are flexible with some of our team members working from home in order manage the needs of our customers during these difficult times.

As we speak, my 401K looks a lot less like Swiss cheese and feels more like I can breathe. I’m sure this is more of a reaction the world will come back from this over time and erase the initial reaction we were all doomed, which we are certainly not.

What we should see is a speeding up of certain trends that were going to happen, just a lot earlier than we all thought.  Trends like home delivery and home health care are at full speed.

Produce should be foremost in our thoughts as a process of health and wellness. I would imagine restaurants, gyms, and sporting events will return, but I’m hoping it would be a safer, new normal that will be better for everyone in the future.

Our produce clients have many challenges going forward.  Innovation is all around us as change can be very positive and profitable once we all get over the shock of the suddenness of this movement. Stores such as 7-11 were born from the off shoot of their primary business of selling ice before the invention of refrigeration.

We are witnessing much stronger communication and collaboration from all parties and are hopeful our new way of working will continue as these issues subside. We expect the utmost ethical business practices are used as the economy rebounds and we all work together to ensure a robust and hopefully v-curved economic recovery!

People in our industry have always been able to work through challenges and adapt to whatever curveball is thrown. We are smart, focused, and live in an ever-changing environment. We are resilient in our business practices and the current extraordinary circumstances will be met with a positive “get it done” attitude.
bob.rose@allenlund.com

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Allen Lund Co. is Bucking the Trend of Downturn During COVID-19

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By Tracy Lewn

Vice President of Sales and Operations

Allen Lund Company

We are living in unprecedented times. It is probably safe to say that in our lifetime, none of us have been faced with a global challenge the likes of COVID-19. It is at times overwhelming – both emotionally and practically speaking. For the better part of nearly eight weeks now, most of us have been inundated with a barrage of mostly negative information and data, coming at us from every angle and every source. In the context of our essential industry, that of arranging and providing transportation and logistics for all kinds of businesses, the reports of impact have varied from doom and gloom, to mixed, to positive.

I am thrilled to report that the Allen Lund Company is bucking the trend of a downturn during this economic anomaly, as our company is realizing some very positive impacts. Where it is reported that others are losing market share, losing customers, cutting their workforce or otherwise struggling, we have consistently grown over the past two months and in fact, are currently looking to hire and looking to expand. We have pivoted, when, where, and how we needed to pivot to meet our customer’s new and unique challenges.

We figured out very quickly how to make working remotely a seamless move. So much so, that even when presented with this particular challenge of having as many as two-thirds of our workforce switch to working from home, our volume has grown tremendously during this time. We are privileged to have such a strong foothold and strong reputation in the perishable and refrigerated transportation segment and with over 44 years in business, our company has a wealth of experience and expertise both at the back of the house as well as the front. We are focused, we are flourishing and we are fortunate.

It is an interesting position to write from; one whereby what we are hearing and reading about mostly contradicts what we are feeling and seeing within our organization. We are facing the daily challenges COVID-19 is bringing to our marketplace, and we are meeting them head-on and with great success.

I’d be remiss if I didn’t tip my hat to our highly reliable and dedicated carrier network, many of whom have been with us for nearly all of our 44 years and who help make our success possible. We are always grateful for these relationships, but even more so these days. It is very rewarding and humbling to know how much good we are doing to help our country’s supply chain and food supply keep moving, in unison with these great carriers of ours.

We wish all of our colleagues, associates, customers, and carriers, health, and safety as we endure this unthinkable situation together. Please let us know how we can help you.

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Tracey Lewin is VP of Sales and Operations, and has been with the Allen Lund Company 31 years. Lewin started with the Allen Lund Company’s accounting department and in 1991 transferred to the Los Angeles refrigerated division; was promoted to assistant manager in 1997, and promoted to manager in 2011. In 2019, she was promoted to her current position.

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Inaugural Allen Lund Legacy Award Presented to Bill Bess

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Bill Bess, director of carrier development for The Allen Lund Company of La Canada Flintridge, CA has been awarded the inaugural Allen Lund Legacy Award.

The new award, given to Bess at the company’s recent annual managers’ meeting and awards banquet, recognizes employees who exemplify the leadership qualities and character of company founder Allen Lund, according to a news release.

Bess said Lund has been the most influential person in his life.

“It was his example as a businessman, a family man and a Christian that has guided most of my personal decisions over the last 35 years,” Bess said when he accepted the award, according to the release. “He set the bar high and encouraged you to be the best that you could be.”

Allen Lund’s wife, Kathie Lund, announced Bess as the recipient.

“I am so proud of all of our employees and I can say with confidence Allen would be as well,” she said, according to the release. “After much reflection with the family, we created this award to continue Allen’s legacy and recognize a truly outstanding employee that exemplifies his qualities.”

Mr. Lund died in April 2018.

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PHOTO:
Bill Bess was recently honored with the inaugural Allen Lund Award. Anna (Lund) Clapp (from left), Kathie Lund, Bess and his wife Gaye, Christina (Lund) Doerfler and Natalie (Lund) Peterson attended the award ceremony.

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Allen Lund Company’s 4th Annual Acts of Kindness Campaign

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By Allen Lund Company

Allen Lund Company is proud to announce its fourth-year completion of Acts of Kindness totaling 86 good deeds for 2019. This tradition kicked off in 2016 to commemorate ALC’s 40th year in business and has only grown since. ALC’s 35 nationwide offices, support departments and corporate have devoted their time to some worthy causes and have surpassed goals this past year.

President of ALC, Eddie Lund commented, “I am very pleased with how our Acts of Kindness initiative has progressed over the last four years. By doing these purposeful acts, we are showing communities how grateful we are for their support which has always been important to my parents as well as promoting kindness to others. Encouraging philanthropy is a cornerstone for our company and we are thrilled to continue to see our employees getting involved with organizations that are meaningful to them and helping people that are in need.” 

Some of the project’s offices were involved in included:

The Cardinal Manning CenterALC corporate employees served food and engaged with individuals at the Cardinal Manning Center, a homeless shelter in Los Angeles, CA. It opened in 1955 and offers a comprehensive program for homeless men transitioning off the streets and into housing. 
Gilda’s Club of MadisonALC Madison office served dinner to families at Gilda’s Club which is a cancer support organization that creates a community of free emotional support, cancer education, and hope for children and adults with any cancer diagnosis and those who care for them.
Great Cycle Challenge USARD Castro from ALC San Antonio participated in the Great Cycle Challenge USA riding 116.3 miles to fight kids’ cancer which is the largest killer of children from disease in the U.S. with over 15,700 children diagnosed with cancer every year and sadly, 38 children dying every week. Kids should be living life, not fighting for it.
We Care LAALC Los Angeles sales office gathered donations at headquarters and fed and clothed over 150 people of the LA homeless community. In addition, employees prepared 500 sack lunches, hygiene packets, and distributed clothing.
Kids’ Food BasketALC Grand Rapids office purchased items to put together 300 supper sacks for Kids’ Food Basket to help nourish children living at or near the poverty level.
Flood Support – Little RockThe ALC Little Rock office got together to help their community after the floods in June 2019. The office spent the day bagging up sandbags and donated water and Gatorade for people in need.

Allen Lund Company is proud to continue an impactful tradition. These acts of kindness are our way of giving back to the communities that have supported us over the years, as well as encourage ALC employees to give back their time.

About Allen Lund Company:

Specializing as a national third-party transportation broker with nationwide offices and over 550 employees, the Allen Lund Company works with shippers and carriers across the nation to arrange dry, refrigerated (specializing in produce), and flatbed freight; additionally, the Allen Lund Company has a logistics and software division, ALC Logistics, and an International Division licensed by the FMC as an OTI-NVOCC #019872NF. If you are interested in joining the Allen Lund Company team, please click here.

Established in 1976, the Allen Lund Company was recognized by Food Logistics magazine as a 2019 Top 3PL & Cold Storage Provider for TransKool Solutions, Logistics Tech Outlook for our software division ALC Logistics as a 2018 Top 10 Freight Management Solution Providers, 2018 FL100+ Top Software and Technology Providers, 2017 Supply & Demand Chain Executive Top 100, 2017 Food Logistics 100+ Top Software and Tech Provider, a 2016 Top IT Provider by Inbound Logistics, 2015 Coca-Cola Challenger Carrier of the Year, 2015 Top Private Company in Los Angeles by the Los Angeles Business Journal, 2015 Top 100+ Software and Technology Providers, 2015 Top 100 Logistics IT Provider by Inbound Logistics, a 2014 Great Supply Chain Partner, and was placed in Transport Topics’ “2014 Top 25 Freight Brokerage Firms.” The company manages over 365,000 loads annually, and received the 2013 “Best in Cargo Security Award.” In 2011, the company received the TIA 3PL Samaritan Award, and NASTC (National Association of Small Trucking Companies) named Allen Lund Company the 2010 Best Broker of the Year. More information is available at allenlund.com

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Allen Lund Company is One of Fastest-Growing Private Companies in LA

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La Cañada Flintridge,  CA.-based  Allen Lund Company (ALC) has been named as one of the Los Angeles Business Journal 100 Fastest Growing Private Companies in Los Angeles for 2019.  

“It is very gratifying to be recognized in the “Fastest Growing Private Company” category as we see ourselves as a growth company, even though we have been in business for almost 44 years,” Edward Lund, president of ALC, said a news release. “We look to continue to grow in the very dynamic logistics industry for many years to come.”

The Allen Lund Company is a national third-party transportation broker with nationwide offices and over 550 employees, according to a news release and also has a logistics and software division, ALC Logistics and an international division.

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