Kloosterboer provides innovative and sustainable supply chain solutions for temperature-controlled food products. With 16 branches worldwide, a storage capacity of more than 4,700,000 m³ and an annual transit capacity of more than 3,500,000 tons of food products, Kloosterboer is one of the market leaders in its sector.

To handle cargo efficiently and optimize growth, Kloosterboer Vlissingen wanted to introduce a semi-automated terminal for the storage and handling of reefer containers using electric rubber tired gantry (RTG) cranes, with the aim of creating more efficient and less space-consuming operations. 

Kloosterboer’s challenge

Kloosterboer’s site in Vlissingen specializes in the handling and storage of temperature-controlled cargo, with an emphasis on raw materials for the food industry.

The company saw that the transport unit with which these goods are delivered is changing from traditional shipments, so-called conventional to containerized (reefer containers), in line with customer demand. As a result of this increasing containerization, the handling of reefer containers has resulted in a growth of 72% in container volume in just one year.

Automating Kloosterboer’s terminal

In October 2019, following the results of a project health check we conducted, Kloosterboer assigned Royal HaskoningDHV to lead the program management for its terminal automation project which encompasses significant infrastructure, equipment and software investments.

Our role on the project is to implement the recommendations from our health check, and bring project governance, structure and management to ensure that the terminal automation project is delivered on time.

Once completed, the project is expected to go-live around the second quarter of 2020. While the reefer container yard is currently built for a storage capacity of 250,000 TEU per year in 2020, it will have the potential to expand to accommodate 400,000 TEU by 2030, thus enabling Kloosterboer to handle more reefer containers for more customers. 

The future of terminal operations

Automation is becoming a necessity for many terminal operators worldwide, and as terminals seek to become smarter, this shift is becoming ever more prevalent. 

By implementing effective project governance, structure and management at an early stage in the design and build of the semi-automated terminal, Kloosterboer will ultimately become a more efficient reefer container terminal, able to compete in both cost and efficiency with this type of cargo alongside larger ports such as Antwerp and Rotterdam.

Gerben Paauwe, General Manager Kloosterboer at the Vlissingen site:

The consultants of Royal HaskoningDHV are guiding us through the process for the realization of the automated reefer container terminal. We trust in their expertise to make a success of this strategically important and mission critical project.” 

Watch Kloosterboer's animation here: