Improving efficiencies and accommodating seasonal fluctuations are two key reasons why Hornell Brewing Company Inc., national marketer of the famous AriZona’ brand iced teas and other beverages, is turning to Saddle Creek Corporation for its logistics needs in the Southeast. Saddle Creek, a third-party logistics company, is currently constructing a new 486,000 square-foot distribution center at its Lakeland, Fla. campus. Hornell Brewing will occupy 200,000 square feet of this facility on a year-round basis and use additional space as needed.

“Once the new facility is completed, Saddle Creek will help us to combine inventory from three facilities into one consolidated DC,” said Jay Petragnani, vice president of planning at Hornell Brewing Co. “We’ll also have the flexibility to expand to meet seasonal inventory fluctuations and support our continued growth in the Southeast.”

The beverage company began using Saddle Creek’s existing facility in Lakeland, Fla. for overflow storage in 2007, but the relationship evolved as Saddle Creek helped streamline the Hornell supply chain.

“We initially considered leasing space and operating a distribution center ourselves, but after reviewing the available space and costs associated with staffing and operations, we elected to use a third-party provider,” said Petragnani. “Saddle Creek’s performance for us in other areas and experience in the beverage industry made them a natural choice for this effort.”

In the new facility, Saddle Creek will provide warehousing and rainbow packaging services and manage case-pick operations with routed, full truckload operations as well as single shuttle operations.

“As a single-source provider, we’re able to improve efficiencies for Hornell Brewing Co. by providing warehousing, transportation and packaging capabilities under one roof,” said Butch Riggleman, vice president and general manager at Saddle Creek. “Our integrated services will help Hornell cut operating expenses and reduce their warehouse space by 70 to 80 percent in multiple locations.”

The decision to consolidate Hornell operations from three buildings into one multipurpose facility will conserve energy as well as decrease the amount of fuel previously used for transportation among several locations. This, in turn, will aid in the creation of a more efficient and environmentally friendly mode of production.

Construction of the new facility will be completed in December 2008, increasing the total space on Saddle Creek’s Lakeland campus to 2,100,000 square feet. The remaining portion of Saddle Creek’s facility will be used for other business, including one customer who has committed to 150,000 square feet of space. The building can be expanded to 715,500 square feet as needed.

“By building a comprehensive facility with room to grow, we’ll be able to accommodate our customers’ volume now and their projected growth in years to come,” said Riggleman. “This flexibility reflects our commitment to doing Whatever It Takes!SM to serve our customers.”