The UK’s largest frozen food logistics facility situated just outside Wisbech in the Fenlands, Cambridgeshire, was officially opened on Friday, 9th July. The warehouse was built and is operated by Dutch company Partner Logistics, one of Europe’s largest providers of specialised, highly automated warehousing.
The building, which has a floorplan size of 175m x 88m (1.5 times size of a football pitch) and rises to 36m high, can store up to 77,000 pallets of frozen food at temperatures of minus 27 degrees Centigrade. It was developed for potato processing giant Lamb Weston Meijer which has taken the lion’s share of the 20,500 sq metre cold store, but is also being used by Birds Eye and Pinguin.
Speaking at the opening, CEO of Partner Logistics, Bram Hage, said: “The opening of our £42 million state-of-the-art facility is a major milestone in our company’s short history. It is our third and largest site in the UK and has been built due to unprecedented demand from our customers for more deep-frozen product storage. We now operate 13 fully automated warehouses in Europe and Russia.”
Since the project’s inception in 2006, support for setting up in the UK was given by the East of England’s inward investment team and Fenland District Council. Jacky Holtby of East of England Inward Investment, said: “We’ve helped with a range of matters including the planning process, recruitment and the local supply chain.” She added: “Partner Logistics’ investment is important to the longer term prosperity of the Fenlands, with its dependence on the agricultural industry. The facility has already created 45 new jobs and, with planned expansion, is set to bring a further 100.”
Councillor Chris Seaton, Fenland District Council’s portfolio holder responsible for economic development, said: “This new facility really reinforces Fenland’s status as a centre of excellence in the agri-food processing and logistics industry.”
Councillor Chris Seaton, Fenland District Council’s portfolio holder responsible for economic development, continued: “We are very pleased about the extra jobs it is creating, not only at the facility itself but also within the surrounding supply chains, which will give a welcome boost to the local economy.” He added: “We have worked closely with the region’s inward investment team to help secure this venture and to make sure that everything has gone smoothly for Partner Logistics.”
Partner Logistics specialises in operating highly automated warehouses, with each new facility purpose designed and built to meet the specific needs of their customers. To date, the company provides warehousing services to leading companies in food, retail and consumer goods in the Netherlands, Belgium, UK and Russia. The majority of the sites are deep freeze warehouses. However, Partner Logistics also operates sites with ambient and chilled conditions.
EEDA is the driving force behind sustainable economic regeneration in the East of England, and funds inward investment support across the region.