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phs Teacrate Plays Its Part

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Transporting over 9 million crates every year for many different industries, phs Teacrate has the potential to affect thousands of businesses and hundreds of thousands of people. Conscious of our wide-reaching influence, we strive to be an ethical supplier, placing great importance on our Corporate Social Responsibility so that we may be accountable to ourselves, our customers and the wider environment.

As part of phs Group, one of Europe’s largest workplace services providers, phs Teacrate benefits from the resource management, investment in training and product development of a larger organisation’s sustainable business model. Directives and processes are applied to all levels to ensure that energy efficiency and workplace wellbeing are maximised, and environmental impact is kept to a minimum wherever possible. As well as managing our own effect on the surroundings, emphasis is also placed on supporting our customers to reduce their impact. phs Wastekit and phs Washroom services provide products that help organisations manage their waste and water, for example, while phs Greenleaf and phs Besafe promote workplace wellbeing by supplying office plants, and protective clothing and laundry services.

At phs Teacrate, we support a wide range of businesses - those involved with food processing and distribution; removals and storage; retail and professional services - as well as public sector institutions. We’re also proud to be able to offer packaging and crate rental packages directly to the public. By using phs Teacrate, all of our customers can be assured that we are committed to using and developing sustainable and responsible solutions. Here are some of the ways in which we have been actively encouraging more conscientious practices:

Safe and Sound

Seven strategically located depots, more than 100 operational staff and a fleet of 29 vehicles mean that phs Teacrate can effectively cover the whole of the UK. Whenever one of our drivers or operatives are on the road, they are representing phs Teacrate so, just as we have an obligation to other road users to ensure that they conduct themselves in a respectful manner, we also have a responsibility to equip them with the knowledge that will help keep them safe.

With around a third of all road accidents involving someone in the line of work, it’s crucial that our drivers and delivery staff are correctly trained to handle both themselves and their vehicles on the roads, as well as at customer sites.

At phs Teacrate, we recognise our responsibility to provide and maintain a safe place of work. For our drivers, that place of work happens to be in their vehicles. While we can’t monitor all 262,000 miles of roads in the UK, we have been able to take steps to improve driver safety and awareness so that they are able to understand the risks and appropriately react to the hazards involved.

This includes ensuring that drivers are informed of all legislation applicable to their particular vehicle. We also look at strategies to help them cope with the mental challenges of dealing with long hours on the road and the less than considerate actions of other drivers. As a result, drivers have reported a reduction in stress and a more relaxed approach to their working day.

Miles of Smiles

Our drivers have been able to put their training to further good use by employing techniques that reduce vehicle emissions, such as driving at a slower, steady pace; reducing engine idling by turning off the engine when parked; and making use of routing technology that will plan the most efficient journey.

Like any other job, using the right tools helps to make your role more effective, so driving the right vehicle plays a part in maximising fuel efficiency and lowering emissions. In response to the recent imposition of an Ultra Low Emission Zone in Central London (and the imminent rollout of ULEZs to other UK cities) phs Teacrate has recently introduced several new greener vehicles to its fleet. These new vans are all Euro 6 and ULEZ compliant with a more economical transmission and, being smaller than other vehicles in our fleet, allow us to travel on narrower roads, therefore resulting in shorter, more direct routes. All this means that phs Teacrate can play a small part in helping to reduce pollution, a contributing factor of heart and lung disease, asthma and breathing illnesses.

Our new vans haven’t only helped reduce phs Teacrate’s carbon footprint. A direct vision window to the near side cab door, a left-hand turn camera and reversing camera allow our drivers to keep an eye on other vehicles and pedestrians. A spoken left-hand turn cyclist warning helps to keep some of the most vulnerable road users out of danger.

We recognise that there is still much that can be done to improve our transport fleet, so elsewhere in the business group, we are continuously seeking out new solutions, such as electric vans.

A Cleaner Conscience    

With much importance placed on maintaining resources for the health of our planet, the advantages of re-using and recycling are clear, but this needs to be done without compromise to quality. phs Teacrate’s plastic crates, trays and pallets are more sustainable and robust than limited use alternatives, like cardboard, as well as being more hygienic than cardboard boxes and wooden pallets. The ability to wash and re-use our products makes them perfect for use in any food-related business as well as anyone who can see the value in retaining a flexible supply of returnable transit packaging (RTP).

Our ISO 14000 qualification is employed throughout phs Teacrate, including at our crate washing plants which use procedures that are as kind to the environment as possible while still producing hygienic results. And only when our rental stock is past its best, do we then recycle responsibly.

The Waste Framework Directive places a greater emphasis on re-use than recycling, so, once prospective customers see how phs Teacrate products and washing service fit into the framework, they have been eager to try our crates, pallets and trays, with a 99% satisfaction rate.

People Power

We never forget that our staff members, our customers and anyone that comes into contact with phs Teacrate are the primary focus of our business. With this in mind, we are constantly keeping abreast of the crate rental industry, seeking out new and innovative ways to decrease our impact on the environment and better impact society. We invest in training our own people to ensure that they are also acting in a responsible manner, while also meeting our obligations for their Health and Safety.

Happy staff in turn lead to happy customers, and together we can maintain the most ethical supply chains that lead to a better future for all.