Swedish spirit distiller uses Scania hybrid truck for transportation needs
The town of Åhus in southern Sweden is home to the Absolut Company, the maker of a world-famous brand of vodka. Founded in 1879, it is, like Scania, a prominent part of Sweden’s industrial heritage. The two companies also share a strong commitment to sustainability.
In Åhus, you can also view Scania’s extremely limited P 320 hybrid-electric truck. Sighted, but barely heard, since the technology makes it silent. But the black cab is hard to miss when used by local haulage company Åhus Åkeri to transport Absolut’s renowned product in a white trailer with Absolut’s unmistakable logotype in blue.
Climate first for hybrid owner
The hybrid can operate ten kilometres on electricity with a total weight of 32 tonnes. It makes the truck a rare example of a fully sustainable solution, something proud owner Andreas Jönsson at Åhus Åkeri is well aware of.
For him, efficiency and functionality come first. With the hybrid and his fleet of biodiesel trucks, the haulage company fulfils the high demands Absolut has on its suppliers by being sustainable in its business operations.
Absolut produces 120 million bottles each year. It’s Jönsson and his drivers job to transport pallets of vodka from Absolut’s factory to their warehouses many times each day. And the truck never leaves with an empty load, bringing used pallets back to the factory on its return trip.
“I’ve bought this hybrid because we put the climate action first and we’d like to be at the forefront. It’s an improvement in emissions, but also a way to reduce the noise level when driving on city streets,” Jönsson says.
Local transport for local needs
It comes as no surprise that Åhus Åkeri is recognised for its work and dedication to quality, environment, and safety & health. Jönsson’s business continuously decreases emissions and with that engagement, he seeks to be a role model for the industry. But it’s also essential for retaining the Absolut assignment.
“We are a local company, transporting local products. From the fields of wheat to the glass in the bottle, everything can be traced back to its origin,” says Jönsson, who feels that if we could visualise emissions people might better understand what is happening to our planet.
Absolut works hard to minimise its impact on the climate, involving suppliers such as Åhus Åkeri. Peter Neiderud, Director Supply Chain, Quality and Environment at Absolut says: “Our distillation process is climate neutral. Now we’re working on transport to and from our facilities.” In 2018, the company celebrated reaching its 2020 goal two years ahead of plan. The goal was to ensure that 80 per cent of its ingoing transport are fossil-free. Now, the focus is on continuing to be as efficient and climate friendly as possible.
Efficiency and climate friendly are also concepts that resonate well with Jönsson. “It would be impossible to invest in new trucks in 2028 and be climate neutral already by 2030. It takes so much more advance planning and a strong will to make a difference.”
What kind of environmental impact the new hybrid will have on the overall emissions for Åhus Åkeri is too soon to tell. Both Absolut and Jönsson will monitor how well the hybrid is doing, the same way his drivers receive a monthly score on their overall performance. No matter what happens, Jönsson will keep raising the bar. “This hybrid is one step closer to a fossil-free future.”