Tesco moving wine by barge
British supermarket chain Tesco said last week it has begun transporting containers of wine by barge instead of truck, a move it said would be beneficial to the environment.
The company said three times a week it will move about 25 20-foot containers of bulk wine shipments arriving in Liverpool from wineries in Australia, California, Chile and Argentina via the Manchester Ship Canal to a bottling plant in Manchester.
From there, the wine will be transported to Tesco stores. The barges will move about 600,000 liters of wine on each journey along the canal's 40-mile stretch.
The company said moving the containers by barge instead of truck “will result in thousands of lorries being taken off Britain’s congested roads” and cut carbon emissions 80 percent.
The company said use of tank containers is also beneficial for the environment because fewer containers are transported across the ocean, noting that 2.4 times more wine can be transported in bulk in a container than if it is transported in bottles.
It said it has plans to use similar waterborne freight routes across Britain.
“This move will be like taking a step back to the pre-car days of the late Victorian era — when a lot of cargo was still transported by canal — but is a step forward in helping to address today’s important environmental issues,” said Laurie McIlwee, Tesco distribution director.