Monday, February 19, 2018

Logistics Group DHL Left with Egg on Face After Chicken Distribution Contract Called Bird Brained

Hundreds of KFC Restaurants Close as Supplies Fly the Coop
Shipping News Feature
UK – When logistics outfit DHL took over the contract to distribute supplies of chicken to the hundreds of restaurants run by Kentucky Fried Chicken from former transport supplier Bidvest, it can hardly have imagined the wrath it would engender when it managed to separate the parents and children of the nation from one of their favourite fast foods. The freight group assumed responsibility for KFC distribution last week and now the Colonel has had to set up a Facebook page so buyers can find the nearest of his outlet's still serving.

It took very little time for critics of a brand which has engendered much anger in the past to take to attacking DHL, with the GMB union immediately commenting that ‘now the chickens are coming home to roost’ after it says it warned the food retailer of the likely consequences of changing supplier in what was presumably a bid to save money.

In November DHL said it, along with specialist foodservice logistics provider Quick Service Logistics (QSL), was introducing ‘a ground breaking move’ and ‘rewriting the rule book’ to ‘set a new benchmark for delivering fresh products to KFC in a sustainable way’. The GMB says this meant serving redundancy notices on 255 staff and the closure of a Bidvest depot as DHL attempts to manage the contract from one distribution centre, rather than a network as employed by its predecessor.

750 out of 900 KFC outlets are reported as closed as KFC made light of the ‘teething problems’, tweeting ‘The chicken crossed the road, just not to our restaurants’. DHL merely stated ‘Due to operational issues, a number of deliveries in recent days have been incomplete or delayed. We are working with our partners, KFC and QSL, to rectify the situation as a priority and apologise for any inconvenience’. Mick Rix, GMB National Officer said:

“We tried to warn KFC this decision would have consequences – well now the chickens are coming home to roost. Bidvest are specialists – a food distribution firm with years of experience. DHL are scratching around for any work they can get, and undercut them. It’s an absolute cock up. KFC are left with hundreds of restaurants closed while DHL try and run the whole operation out of one distribution centre – where conditions are an utter shambles.

“Three weeks ago KFC knew they had made a terrible mistake, but by then it was too late. KFC’s bird-brained decision has caused untold misery to customers, to Bidvest workers and restaurant staff who are not being paid.”