Driver redundancies could be on the cards at DHL Supply Chain after KFC’s decision to terminate its partnership with the logistics firm.

The move is understood to affect as many as 100 staff at DHL Supply Chain's Rugby DC.

KFC confirmed this week that former incumbent Best Food

KFC no chicken

Logistics will take over the southern half of DHL’s contract. This comes just over a year since it was brought back on board by KFC to run the northern half of DHL’s distribution deal.

DHL Supply Chain ousted Best Food Logistics, formerly known as Bidvest, from the major contract in October 2017.

However in February last year delivery problems forced KFC to close hundreds of food outlets across the country for several days.

Read more

In a statement a KFC spokesman said: “After last year, we’ve been working really hard to make sure we can continue to deliver fresh chicken every day to our restaurants.

"We’ve decided to switch distribution partners back to Best Food Logistics, who’ve done a great job in supporting us while we’ve been getting back on track this year.”

A DHL spokeswoman said: “In accordance with its contractual arrangements, DHL Supply Chain has advised that it is ending its current relationship with KFC, with the business transitioning to the new provider over a defined period to ensure a seamless service to customers.

“Affected staff have been informed of the situation and will shortly enter into consultation with the company and their representatives to discuss their options, including transferring to the new provider under TUPE regulations or redeploying to other DHL operations as appropriate.

"However, DHL remains committed to Rugby as a strategic location and will make every effort in the coming months to secure a new customer for the warehouse.”

She added that termination of the deal was made for “strategic reasons and in no way reflects on the performance of the Rugby operation which has achieved excellent results in recent months and throughout the Christmas peak”.

Paul Whyte, business unit director at Best Food Logistics, said: “Best Food Logistics can confirm that we have agreed a long term partnership to supply the full KFC and Taco Bell UK estates.

"KFC and Taco Bell will be seamlessly integrated into our existing network over the course of the next few months.

"As the leading provider of Food Service logistics to the UK eating out market we are delighted to be able to provide exceptionally high levels of service and innovation to one of the world’s most exciting and fastest growing food brands.”

Image: Shutterstock