More than 150 representatives of the UK cold chain were joined by Ministers and MPs for a Cold Chain Federation parliamentary reception on 16th May 2023, where politicians praised the expertise and innovation of cold chain people and commended the industry’s investment into recruitment and future skills.
The reception was hosted in The House of Commons by Chris Clarkson (MP for Heywood and Middleton) on behalf of the Cold Chain Federation. Into its second year, this year’s event focused on the Celebration of People in the Cold Chain. Partnering with Generation Logistics and Lineage Logistics, it brought the membership, future talent and decision-makers together to learn more about the sector, the ongoing work, and a chance to honour the best and brightest. People in attendance included apprentices, young professionals, and the future leaders of the logistics industry – who have embraced the sector through a variety of different roles and career development opportunities.
It celebrated the skilful and resilient work of people across the UK cold chain’s wide range of roles including temperature-controlled warehouse operations, driving, engineering, sustainability, finance, marketing, HR, digital technology and international trade. It also demonstrated the industry’s investment into future skills needs as well as improving pay, conditions, and welfare facilities, and discussions explored how Government policies can support the industry to the benefit of communities, the economy and the environment.
Paul Bennell, President of the Cold Chain Federation, said: “People across the UK’s cold chain have shown unswerving dedication and resilience as we have kept the nation’s food and pharma running smoothly through challenge after challenge in recent years. At the same time, people in our industry have been adapting and learning new skills as the cold chain evolves in response to changing customer requirements, international trade dynamics and the journey towards net zero. This reception gave the Cold Chain Federation an important opportunity to show politicians the vital role that cold chain people are playing for the nation today and for the future. I would like to thank all the Ministers and MPs who joined us for their appreciation for the people working in the UK’s cold chain.”
Alongside host Chris Clarkson MP, politicians in attendance included MP for Suffolk Coastal and Defra Secretary Therese Coffey, MP for Redditch and DLUHC Minister Rachel Maclean, MP for Vale of Clwyd and Wales Office Minister James Davies, MP for Livingston Hannah Bardell, MP for Eastleigh Paul Holmes, MP for Warrington North Charlotte Nichols, and more.
Chris Clarkson MP said: “I am pleased to host this reception to celebrate people working in the UK’s cold chain industry. The nation relies on cold storage and temperature-controlled distribution operations as the linchpin of our food and pharma supply chains, and their resilience and reliability came to the fore in the pandemic and the challenges that have followed. Cold chain businesses also make important contributions to our local communities and the national economy, it was a pleasure to celebrate the people who make this happen day-by-day.”
Claire Walters, Regional Vice President of Lineage Logistics, said: “The past few years have showcased the vital role that our people play across the cold chain and our national food supply chain. With increasing demand for temperature-controlled logistics, it is crucial that we continue to invest in developing our talented people and our skills for the future. I am delighted to join the Board of the Cold Chain Federation, and to work alongside a talented team to advance the cold chain industry.”
The Cold Chain Federation is a partner in Generation Logistics, working to find the next generation of logistics talent. Find out more at https://generationlogistics.org/
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