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We need a completely new system for how we supply a society with goods. That is the opinion of Johan Kallin, CEO of Nowaste Logistics. We are in the midst of a paradigm shift, driven by e-commerce, accelerated by the pandemic. But logistics is burdened by what Kallin calls “extreme inefficiency” and claims that part of the solution lies in the truck.

E-commerce globally generates over USD 4 trillion and is growing by around 30 percent each year. An increasing share of retail sales is moving online. Last year, Swedish consumers spent SEK 146 billion on e-commerce. E-commerce already dominates certain industries. Swedish electronics retail has over 50 percent of its sales there. Grocery retail was the last to go online but is now rapidly increasing.

Det är tydligt att vi är mitt uppe i ett paradigmskifte som påverkar oss alla.
Det händer på alla marknader världen över, i samtliga branscher. Även om man kommit olika långt på olika håll så pekar kurvorna åt samma håll var du än kollar. Samtidigt ökar våra krav på enkelhet och bekvämlighet. E-handeln måste införlivas i våra övriga liv, det som pågår när vi handlar mjölk, köper sneakers, kör våra barn till skolan och funderar över vad mamma behöver på äldreboendet. Det måste bli mycket enklare att få varorna levererade direkt hem till dörren, och de måste levereras dit på långt mycket mer resurseffektiva sätt. Vi kan inte fortsätta att köra omkring i gamla hjulspår, vi behöver bli mer omtänksamma.

Johan Kallin, CEO, Nowaste Logistics

It is often said that we have a shortage of transport capacity but stand by a major road and think about how many vehicles are driving around empty. We are missing out on a gigantic capacity when transportation is not coordinated. Furthermore, we often forget our travel distances between home and various stores and shopping centers.

I believe that we need to envision an E-hub or rather many E-hubs. That is where all the goods will arrive. Everything is coordinated there. Order your groceries through the digital platform. They are available there along with the pens ordered by the school. Your sneakers and medicine also come there. At the hub, the private and public sectors collaborate. There is always a range of the most used goods available for delivery with short notice. In spring, the local asparagus producer turns to the hub and prices and markets their products on the platform, without intermediaries

When the item you ordered arrives at the hub, it is scanned, and you can choose what to do. Pick it up on-site, express delivery to your door, perhaps delivery with a bicycle courier for the most environmentally friendly option. Or you can let the item come to you for free using the regular route that is always taken. Then the item arrives when it best fits into the coordinated routes, safely and smoothly along with other items you have ordered. The regular route is used for deliveries to elderly care facilities, preschools, the public sector, and also reaches private addresses. If transportation can be coordinated in this way, the number of trips is dramatically reduced. Moreover, you would not need to be at home at certain times to receive a certain type of delivery.

We are already working on a service that we call E-drop. It is a connected, temperature-controlled delivery locker that would work excellently in combination with the hubs I mentioned. The lockers can be small and tailored for individual homes, resembling a nicely designed air heat pump on the façade. But they can also be large and centrally located in a new residential area. The point is that you can have your groceries delivered directly to your home without the risk of the cucumber in the shopping bag on your doorstep freezing in winter or the chicken souring in summer. The cold chain is intact. You can pick up your goods whenever it suits you and do not have to wait for a delivery.

During the past year, E-drop has primarily made a difference for some municipal home care services throughout the country. Helsingborg and Kristianstad were the quickest to embrace it, but now E-drop is being launched extensively. The lockers are placed close to the homes of the elderly or where health-care personnel operate. Deliveries are left there and can be picked up at your convenience. Together with the customer, the staff can digitally shop for groceries and do not need to spend time going to the convenience store but can instead dedicate that time to care. There is also a sense of security in having familiar personnel handle and deliver the groceries, rather than constantly changing carriers. Not everyone is willing or able to open their door to a delivery person.

We need to rethink logistics in new ways. I believe that four criteria must be met. Home delivery must be an option, it must be very secure, the routes must be temperature-controlled and capable of handling both chilled and frozen foods, and finally, the system must be independent. As a private individual, you don’t care who delivers the goods.

Coordination can yield tremendous effects. Less traffic on the streets, lower environmental impact, easier and more convenient for us consumers. But it relies on us tearing down old barriers and isolated supply chains and thinking differently. If one stops and thinks for a moment, the truck – traditionally regarded as an environmental villain – can actually be the hero of the future when it comes to the environment!

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