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5 May, 2006 - 12:46 By Staff Reporter

Canned heat as La Doria expands facilities at the Port of Felixstowe

Cambridgeshire-based LDH (La Doria) has signed a new contract extension with Hutchison Ports UK (HPUK) to channel all its UK shipments almost exclusively through the Port of Felixstowe in Suffolk, significantly expanding its base there.Cambridgeshire-based LDH (La Doria) has signed a new contract extension with Hutchison Ports UK (HPUK) to channel all its UK shipments almost exclusively through the Port of Felixstowe in Suffolk, significantly expanding its base there.

The new contract means that canned foods provider, LDH, will be consolidating all its operations at the port and occupy 220,000 sq ft of space. The number of containers handled will rise from 5,200 this year to 10,000-plus by 2008.

LDH logistics director, Paul Nicholas, said: “The new arrangement provides an increased space, which is over 20 per cent larger than the previous site.

“It also provides us with one strategic location on the South Terminal. Before we had two buildings one mile apart, now we have three buildings within 50 metres of each other.

“Felixstowe is already our primary port in the UK but now we will proactively guide our products through the port so we can use the facilities we have access to there, rather than use several other ports like Liverpool, Tilbury and Southampton.”

Chris Lewis, chief executive officer of HPUK, added: “This new contract is excellent news for HPUK.

“When we first signed the contract with LDH seven years ago, 98 per cent of all warehousing space at the Port of Felixstowe was allocated to forest products.

“The initial contract was HPUK’s first foray into warehousing for retail cargo, which has now flourished into a very profitable business venture, and is testament to HPUK’s leading reputation into the fast-growing consumer services market.”

LDH is a part-owned subsidiary of Italian tomato giant La Doria. As well as canned tomatoes and tomato purees, it sells a range of other private label canned produce from vegetables, fruit and fish, to dry foods such as chocolate and pasta.

Its principal customers include TESCO, ASDA, Aldi and Waitrose amongst others. The extension will take the current contract until at least the end of February 2009, which extends association between LDH and Hutchison to 10 years.

LDH has around 50 staff working between its Alconbury headquarters and the Port of Felixstowe.

It is 51 per cent owned by La Doria, 29 per cent belongs to management and 20 per cent to Lehman Brothers who bought out HF Heinz’ stake. In 2005 it generated £145m of revenues.

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