RKFoodland managing McDonald’s Supply Chain
McDonalds’ products are distributed by Radhakrishna Foodland Pvt. Ltd which is the only distribution partner of the fast food chain in the supply-chain right through the country.
From July 1993, even before McDonald’s India started its restaurant operations in India, RK Foodland was chosen to become McDonald’s India’s key partner in its Supply chain. It created facilities and infrastructures, and adopted systems to meet McDonald’s stringent supply chain requirements. Today, it manages the Distribution Centers and logistics for McDonald’s restaurants across India.
The Company’s resources are totally focused to meet McDonald’s expectation of ‘Cold, Clean and On time delivery’ with a mission that ensures that all McDonald’s restaurants are supplied without interruption, products conforming to specified stringent standards at the best cost to the McDonald’s system’.
The ‘DC’ as the distribution center is called in the McDonald’s system is responsible for procurement, the quality inspection, storage, inventory management, deliveries to the restaurants and data collection (which includes recording and reporting). It also provides Value added services like, repacking of promotional items, distribution of uniforms, training material and other consumables. The DC plays a vital role in maintaining the integrity of the products throughout the entire ‘cold chain’ – a distribution system that ensures that products, which arrive at McDonald’s restaurants from suppliers all over India, are absolutely fresh with little or negligible nutrition loss. This is completely transparent operation and is subject to regular audits by McDonald’s.
The association started when McDonald’s introduced RK Foodland to FJ Walkers of Australia, which helped it to develop the distribution set-up in India. The association has helped Radhakrishna Foodland to achieve the following:
- Designing and establishing the distribution system to handle large volumes.
- Engineering the storage and delivery network to service the unique requirements of McDonald’s
- Devising delivery schedules to minimize business interruption and maximize efficiency so the McDonald’s store mangers know exactly what to expect and when.
- Maintaining open communication lines with customers, suppliers and all business associates.
- Emerging as a key system player after recognizing the inter-dependence of all the associates in the McDonald’s business system.
- Transferring some of the good distribution practices to other divisions of the group.
The company uses an ERP application for efficiency, speed and accuracy in the system. A typical McDonald’s Distribution Centre is fully equipped with state-of-the-art equipment like refrigeration system (chillers and freezers) that maintains temperatures of –25º C. Ante rooms with temperatures of 10º C where the off loading of goods take place, dock levelers, dock shelters, pallet trucks, high reach fork lifts and the refrigerated trucks with multi temperature facility.
The refrigerated trucks are divided in into three zones – Frozen Zone, Chill Zone and Ambient zone – the patties and other frozen products are stored in the frozen zone which is maintained at -18ºC to -20ºC, the fresh vegetables and diary mixes are stored in the chill zone, temperature here varies between 0ºC to 2ºC and the dry foods including buns, packing material are ferried in ambient zone at room temperature to the distribution center from the suppliers factories.
Recognizing the DC’s performance, McDonald’s India conferred on them the ‘Best Supplier Award’ for 1997. As a sign of increasing confidence in Foodland’s operations, McDonald’s agreed to terminate the technical support till then provided to the company by FJ Walkers of Australia in 1998. Subsequently McDonald’s awarded distribution in North, South and East regions also to Foodland.
Foodland’s association with McDonald’s India is a typical example of McDonald’s support and commitment to its local partners, who are now growing as McDonald’s grows in India.