Specialist multi temperature supply chain operator and responsible family business Oakland International has appointed Bob Richards to the post of General Manager at its Redditch facility.

Previously holding senior and director roles at several blue-chip organisations including PHS, Bidvest Logistics, Christian Salvesen, TDG, Palletways and David Hathaway Transport, Bob has 30 years of management experience and a proven track record in continual improvement, man-management and process management.

Commenting he said: “I’m really excited about joining Oakland International which is a great business with real growth potential in a challenging market place. Seeing the business in peak trading will assist me as I look at the structure, working patterns and the team and help formulate and support the design of the business strategy going forward.”

A multi-award winner, Oakland International is a BRC accredited (for storage and distribution) business and a multi temperature distribution specialist providing contract packing, storage, picking, tempering and supports retail, convenience, discount, wholesale and food service markets via hubs and facilities in the UK, Ireland and an overseas partner in Spain.

Oakland International Managing Director, Shaun Foley, said: “I am delighted to welcome Bob to the team. His knowledge and extensive sector experience will be a significant asset to our Redditch operations.”

Family business, multi temperature supply chain and logistics specialist, Oakland International, has appointed Eimear Scolard as the company’s new Technical Team Lead.

Tasked with heading their successful Distress Load Team, Eimear will oversee inspections, co-ordinating the team from initial contact through to load completion. With full HACCP training and a quality assurance background, trained in traceability and all aspects of food safety having previously worked at Oakland, Eimear’s prior fast-paced retail experience as an assistant manager and team leader meant she was ideally placed to re-join the company’s rapidly expanding Distress Loads Team.

Eimear commented: “It feels great to be back, with the attraction being the ability to grow a department in a role I really enjoy. We are already taking on new jobs, so it’s a very exciting time for us, and with the unpredictable nature of distress load work, we never know what’s coming in, so we need to respond immediately to incidents and contaminated loads of any nature.”

Oakland International’s pioneering Distress Load Management service is an innovative solution whereby food losses for customers, loss adjusters and hauliers on distressed loads are reduced significantly whilst offering additional environmental customer benefits. A distressed load is defined by the integrity of food safety being potentially compromised such as when pallets move in transit, incorrect temperature or clandestine infiltration. Oakland is developing an inspector training program which specialises in all aspects of food safety and clandestine infiltration.

Overseeing all inspections, as lead manager Eimear will be customer focused. Originally from Ireland, Eimear moved to the UK 2 years ago.

Added Eimear: “I have a great deal of pride in my work which reflects itself in many ways from how we work as a team to the standards of product going out the door, with my key skill being accuracy, crucial given the work we do. If you have a load issue and you’re wondering ‘is that something Oakland can deal with?’ the answer is most likely yes! It’s always worth picking up the phone and giving us a call!

“Working with distress loads can be challenging but it can also be very satisfying and rewarding when a customer needs help and within 24-hours we have sorted their issue and saved stock and have them back on the road and ready once again for delivery. I’m loving living in England and I have a wonderful career, so it’s likely I’ll never leave!”

A multi-award winner and a BRC double A accredited and EHO approved multi temperature distribution business, Oakland International specialises in contract packing, storage, picking, tempering, distribution and brand development support for to the retail, convenience, discount, wholesale and food service markets via hubs and facilities in the UK, Ireland and an overseas partner in Spain.

Reconditioning migrant affected loads for more than 15 years, multi temperature supply chain, distribution and logistics specialist Oakland International has seen a significant increase in requests to deal with contaminated loads in recent months.

Oakland Director, Robert Hardy, commented: “Whatever form of Brexit we end up with the safe movement of goods will still need to continue. All parties in the food supply chain from producers and manufacturers, hauliers, importers and retailers, they all have legal responsibilities under regulation EC178/2002 to ensure our food safety, with heavy penalties applied if these regulations are breached.”

Oakland’s HACCP accredited Distress Load Management (DLM) service minimises losses and food waste for customers, loss adjusters and hauliers on distressed loads due to movement during transit, theft or stowaway incursion. More than 5,000 trucks a day arrive in the UK from continental Europe and due to the sheer volume of traffic Border Force is only able to check around 10% of inbound trailers. During the last 12 months they have detected some 56,000 migrant attempts to gain illegal entry to the UK. Vehicles are regularly sent to Oakland when a risk to food safety has been detected, with load recovery and assessment undertaken same day or the following day in most cases.

Added Robert: “Oakland’s accredited DLM service has built a strong reputation trusted by both brands and insurers and consistently operates a recovery level of 85% of product, with nothing sent to landfill. Any residual food waste is redirected to nominated anaerobic digestion plant centres or recycling centres and used for renewable energy.

“A 5-point check includes, swab tests, thermal imaging and CO2 detection, and although we’re not particularly looking for stowaways, we will detect any contamination if this is the case. Our customers rely on us to protect their supply chain with clean cargo given a HACCP certificate of compliance to be presented on delivery, and contaminated cargo quarantined. Our thorough vehicle check and swift turnaround is making many of our customers consider making it a mandatory process for all inbound cargo.”

Free advice is available via www.contaminatedload.com or by calling their helpline on 0044 (0) 333 014 2850. A multi-award winner, Oakland is BRC double A accredited and EHO approved and as a multi temperature distribution business they specialise in contract packing, storage, picking, tempering and support retail, convenience, discount, wholesale and food service markets via hubs and facilities in the UK, Ireland and an overseas partner in Spain.

Multi temperature supply chain and logistics specialist Oakland International has confirmed it is to invest around £2.8m in a high-bay extension at its Corby facility.

Oakland International Business Unit Director, Lee Whiting, commented: “Oakland needed to identify a site which strategically fitted its core distribution requirements for a number of large UK retailers.

“Since launching Corby in March 2017 we have been delighted to recruit and develop a fantastic team of people, mostly from the Corby and nearby Kettering areas who have delivered industry-leading service levels for our customers. The confidence in our future recruitment strategy and the proactive support of the Corby council leadership team and reactive planning department has been a great confidence boost, which has played a significant part in our intentions to invest and grow further in the Corby region.”

Working in conjunction with new landlords, Norwich Council, the extended hub will deliver a multi temperature proposition to the market for chilled, frozen and ambient storage and plans to support the development by recruiting wherever possible within the local area by the end of 2019.

A multi-award winner and the recipient of ‘two’ Queen’s Awards for Enterprise, for International Trade and Sustainable Development, Oakland International is a BRC accredited (for storage and distribution) business, which encompasses a pioneering Distress Load Management (DLM) service; minimising food waste for customers, loss adjusters and hauliers on distressed product loads and consistently operating a recovery level of around 80% of product, with nothing sent to landfill as any residual food-waste is redirected to anaerobic digestion plant centres or recycling centres for use as renewable energy.

With a view to formalising their CSR efforts at their Redditch offices, Oakland launched the Oakland Foundation, a charity aimed at supporting children and young people in Redditch, Bromsgrove and the surrounding area.

Oakland International Co-Founder and CEO, Dean Attwell, added: “Whilst we are still learning about our new home in Corby, we are keen to repeat what has worked well in Redditch by applying ourselves to worthwhile causes in and around Corby.

“We have always believed in getting involved, and in supporting the local communities where our teams live, focusing on working with like-minded groups and organisations who want to make a difference.”

Retaining accreditation for well-over a decade, responsible family business Oakland International has maintained British Retail Consortium’s (BRC) quality standard for storage and distribution, securing a double ‘AA’ grade rating.

Head of Supply Chain Compliance and Accreditation, Louise Smith, stated: “This is a fantastic result for the team and I would like to thank them for all of their hard work which is so important in maintaining our Quality Standards, not just on audit day but on a year-round basis.”

Oakland International was one of the first businesses in their sector to achieve BRC accreditation which is internationally recognised as the ‘global standard’ for storage and distribution. The standard encompasses all actions undertaken that may affect safety, quality and legality of products handled and stored, with the standard viewed as a cross-function responsibility, wholly supported by the company’s senior management and team members.

Added Louise: “The heap of praise we received from the auditor covered our policies, procedures, layout and our warehouse process enhancements, and the willingness and friendliness of our team.

“Securing BRC’s AA rating is a clear endorsement for our customers and supply chain partners that they can have absolute faith in every area of Oakland’s operation from product safety, to quality and legality, they will not be compromised in any way.”

A multi temperature supply chain specialist, Oakland’s collaborative business approach with producers and retailers to optimise service, quality and consumer availability remains key to supplying UK, Irish and Spanish retail, discount, convenience and wholesale markets from the company’s UK and Irish facilities.

Launched in Worcestershire in 1998, ethical family business Oakland International has celebrated 20-years of successful trading with team members, their families at a family-friendly BBQ at Attwell Farm Park, Beoley on Saturday 15th September.

Oakland’s ‘double-decade’ anniversary marks an important business milestone for the company which originally began in egg production, and two-decades later is a major Redditch employer, operating hubs and facilities in the UK, Ireland and has an overseas partner in Spain.

Oakland International Co-Founders, Dean and Sallie Attwell commented: “As we look back and reflect on our two-decades in business, we are incredibly appreciative of the heritage of talent within Oakland and of the many accomplishments we have achieved together as a team.

“Continual investment in new generations of talented staff and investment in long-term business and partner relationships ensures we add value to the many customer services we now provide.

“A genuine and heartfelt thank you to every one of our team members, our customers, our partners, our parents and families as we wouldn’t be where we are today without their support. They have all helped make this possible, here’s to the next twenty years!”

Winners of numerous industry awards and accolades over the years, Oakland International today is a ‘double’ Queen’s Awards for Enterprise winner, for International Trade and Sustainable Development, and a BRC double ‘A’ accredited multi temperature distribution business delivering a vast array of specialist services in contract packing, storage, picking, tempering, distribution and brand development support to major retail, convenience, discount, wholesale and food service markets.

Responsible family business and specialist UK and Ireland multi temperature supply chain operator Oakland International has appointed Shaun Devey as its Group IT Director, a new boardroom role focused on enhancing information technology across group operations.

Previously the winner of the Motor Transport Best Use of Technology Award, Devey has a strong strategic and operational business focus which will support Oakland’s aim of delivering technology innovation and change, improved operational performance and delivering value-added customer services. Bringing with him over 25 years of experience providing industry leading and award-winning technology within the services, retail and logistics sectors, Devey has held senior positions within a variety of organisations including Interserve PLC, Phones4u, ArrowXL and most recently the iForce Group.

Commenting he said: “Oakland International has a very exciting couple of years ahead as we mature the customer proposition, develop stronger strategic partnerships and transform the Group’s technology platforms. These developments are exciting and will significantly add to the bottom line, however I am also looking forward to being part of a business which really cares for its people and the social impact of the service we provide.

“Technology can support transformed value to our business, with leading business partners such as Oakland International being easy to integrate with and offering industry leading management information which helps inform business decisions and supports a seamless journey for our shared customers.”

A multi-award winner, Oakland International is a BRC accredited (for storage and distribution) business and a multi temperature distribution specialist providing contract packing, storage, picking, food distribution and brand development support for ambient, chilled and frozen food to the retail, convenience, discount, wholesale and food service markets.

Oakland International Chief Executive and Co-Founder, Dean Attwell said: “I am delighted to welcome Shaun to the team. His extensive knowledge and exceptional technology sector experience will be a key asset as we focus on all aspects of strategic IT transformation across the Oakland Group.”

Having worked in and around the Redditch area for the last six years, Shaun commenting on his appointment added: “I am passionate about delivering industry leading technology, developing my team’s careers and skills, and I am very appreciative of the warm welcome I’ve received from the whole Oakland team.”

Eight students from Ipsley CE Academy in Redditch are celebrating their success after completing the Oakland Programme, a structured course designed to provide young people with valuable workplace experience.

The programme is run by local children’s charity the Oakland Foundation, in partnership with key sponsor and local business Oakland International. Over a period of months, Foundation trustees worked with the Ipsley students to deliver a number of sessions, offering pupils the chance to understand where products come from, the safety awareness required regarding vehicles and lorries, as well as taking part in work shadowing within departments at Oakland International’s Redditch facility, all designed to support students’ understanding and identify the key skills needed by certain job roles.

As they celebrated their last session together students enjoyed a team baking session organised and supported by Foundation trustees, with parents and carers invited to see the students each receive their Oakland Programme graduation certificate and gift voucher.

Foundation Trustee, Hayley Smith, commented: “The Oakland Programme is designed to be flexible to best suit the outcome required for the pupils involved, and includes a number of structured sessions covering a range of topics aimed at engaging and raising students’ aspirations.

“Their final food-based team challenge involved the students designing and cooking a main meal and dessert using ingredients provided, which they were then able to take home and share with parents, carers and guardians.”

Thought provoking, this young people’s project offers the chance for students to experience diverse workplace environments and the feeling of ‘being at work’ and understanding of what this involves.

Nicola Beech, Ipsley CE Academy Principal, commented: “We continue to be grateful for the additional opportunities our pupils receive through support from the Oakland Foundation. Pupils gain so much from spending time learning outside of the usual school environment and this project has made a real difference to the young people involved.”

The Oakland Foundation works with children and young people within Redditch and Bromsgrove and the surrounding area through their work in the areas of Health and Nutrition, Education and Sport.

Brexit advisor and registered EU trade expert, Robert Hardy will address the 2018 World Forum for Foreign Direct Investment (FDI) in Liverpool, 11th and 13th June.

The world’s biggest business festival, the World Forum for FDI will attract over 500 delegates from corporates to government officials and explore the latest in solutions, innovation, and best practices, with topics ranging from Rise of the Robots, Workforce Development & Talent Acquisition, The New Global Disorder, The Investor Perspective and Cybersecurity.

Panellists will discuss current economic trends, future drivers powering tomorrow’s economies, the importance of protecting intellectual property and why artificial intelligence is set to explode, with economists, futurists and site selection experts discussing global issues and their impact on FDI.

Commercial Director of Oakland Invicta, an authority at reducing food losses due to cargo contamination, Robert will join the panel to discuss; The New Global Disorder: Brexit, Trump, China and Global Risk, and as an authority on international trade, a registered expert with the EU Commission and Brexit advisor to the Institute for Government, InterTradeIreland, InvestNI and specialist Customs planner, will shed light on how industry can navigate Brexit to its advantage.

Stated Robert: “I am honoured to be invited to address the World Forum and look forward to our constructive discussion and debate. To many UK businesses it may seem like we’re teetering on the verge of Brexit chaos, with smoke and mirror information offering no clear route of how to get through, but there are processes already in place which will lessen its effects and have the potential to create a number of post Brexit benefits.

“By embracing change and Brexit as an opportunity to examine the processes, and by exploring how additional elements can potentially run in tandem, with little or no effect on the movement of goods, including to or from Ireland, it is possible to safeguard customer experience so that at worst there is no change, perceiving instead a supply chain opportunity to improve, broaden and to further develop. Brexit can work for you!”

Robert will also be speaking at the next in a series of dedicated Brexit Seminars at the NEC, Birmingham on the 27th June, joining industry experts to address an international delegation from food businesses and non-food importers and exporters, Embassies, logistics providers and consultants from the UK, Ireland, Europe and Asia. For details and to contact Robert for more information and to book please visit: www.mybrexit.uk

For further information about the 15th annual World Forum for FDI and its international speaker line-up please visit: www.worldforumforfdi.com 


The first ever charity music festival of its kind, ‘GlastonBeoley’ is only a week away and will be an amazing community and family event in the village of Beoley, Worcestershire on Saturday 9th June 2018.

From Imaner to English Jones, The Hatstand Band, hannah ‘h’, Carrick, Chris Bicknell Music, The Red Tailsto and that’s naming just a few artists; and featuring a real ale and a gin bar, a wide selection of foods and things to buy as well as the very best in local music talent to indulge in, there’s so much for everyone to enjoy.

Funds raised from the event will be donated to Deafblind UK, which assists people with combined sight and hearing loss offering help, advice, guidance and practical support, and the Mental Health Foundation, which is the UK’s charity for mental health and campaigns for good mental health for all.

GlastonBeoley Organiser Debbie Joynes said: “The excitement is building for us all now as the date is getting nearer and the tickets are selling so well! I am so proud of all the work the committee has put in and the level of enthusiasm for putting on a great festival to bring people together and raise money for these important charities. Recently we had ‘Mental Health week’, but good mental health and support for this who struggle needs to be a priority for us all year round.

“The help that we have received has been so heart-warming.”

Showcasing amazing musical talent and helping to shine the spotlight on two national charities working within local communities across the country, GlastonBeoley is the first family music festival of its kind to feature local musicians and singer songwriters from across the Midlands.

Hayley Smith from Oakland International, a local business supporting the event, commented: “We are delighted to be supporting GlastonBeoley, be a fantastic family and community event which will help to connect people and support our wider community.”

The day starts at 1pm and runs through until 10pm, with over 20 bands and artists taking to the stage throughout the day.

Tickets are priced at £7 for adults, £3 for children aged between 10 and 16. Under 10’s go free. Tickets are available to buy from the village Inn, Beoley or Courtyard Music, Tardebigge and for further information please visit: www.glastonbeoley.co.uk – email: [email protected] or call 07833 205463.