Stobart Rail and DB Schenker Rail (UK) have joined forces to launch a temperature-controlled intermodal service from Valencia to the UK via the Channel Tunnel.
The service will help lower carbon dioxide emissions and reduce transport times from Europe to the UK and Ireland, and will be offered to new and existing customers of both companies on a shared multi-client train.
Each train will contain 30 reefer boxes and it has been claimed that the direct service from the pack-house to the store will reduce waste and increase the shelf life of products.
All rail traction will be provided by a single rail freight operator across three countries, and will involve DB Schenker’s European subsidiaries Euro Cargo Rail in France and Euro Cargo Rail in Spain.
Andrew Tinkler, Stobart Group’s CEO, said: “[We] believe this adds a massive opportunity for both companies to enable a cost effective environmentally friendly solution for moving fresh and ambient produce throughout Europe.”
He continues: “The service will save 8.5 million road miles per year operating three trains per week, annually reducing carbon dioxide emissions by 8,625 tonnes… This goes a long way in meeting our aspiration of moving more goods by rail.”
Keith Heller, chief executive of DB Schenker Rail (UK), added: “The development of this product has been made possible by the investments that we have made in Euro Cargo Rail in France and Euro Cargo Rail in Spain over the past four years… With increasing environmental and cost pressure we see tremendous growth opportunities for similar services to France and Germany.”