Whole Foods Beginning Biodiesel Switch
11 October 2005
The Midwest distribution center for Whole Foods Market (WFMI) is beginning a switch to a B20 biodiesel blend for its delivery trucks that service a five-state area.
With $4.5 billion in sales (last four quarters), Whole Foods is now world’s leading retailer of natural and organic foods, with 176 stores in North America and the United Kingdom. The company operates 8 distribution centers.
A month and a half ago, the Whole Foods distribution center in Northwest Indiana began using biodiesel fuel on three of its 20 trucks in a pilot project. The plan is to switch the entire fleet to the fuel once a fueling center is built. The Midwest center’s distribution fleet burns some 8,000 gallons of diesel per week.
Because Whole Foods operates in a relatively decentralized manner, an initiative such as this starts out regionally and then can propagate, according to a company spokesperson. At least two other regions—the Southern Pacific and the Southwest—want to follow after the Midwest has completed the rollout to 100% usage.
The Southern Pacific and Southwest regions have both agreed to have the Midwest provide a turnkey procedure for them to implement. Nationwide deployment may follow.
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