Welcome to the June 1st edition of Warehouse & Logistics News. Despite the growing importance of I.T. and the internet to this industry, there’s a distinct emphasis on bricks and mortar in this issue.

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On our front page we have a report on Combilift’s new €50 million factory, recently opened by the Irish PM Leo Varadkar and a showpiece of manufacturing excellence, futureproofed for Combilift’s anticipated growth. The 46,500 m² facility is one of Ireland’s biggest manufacturing operations to be located under a single roof. The focus is on sustainability and energy saving: solar panels supply energy and a biomass boiler heats the spray ovens and assembly lines.

Our Warehousing supplement in the centre pages is testament to the strong confidence of this sector of the economy, which is surging forwards thanks to online retailing in general and Amazon in particular. We have ‘front line’ reports from the industry associations and the major equipment and solutions suppliers. We also have an exclusive interview in the supplement with Derek Anderson, Strategic Director at EBT Industrial, ECOBAT Battery Technologies’ industrial division, who are helping make the UK’s forktruck fleets greener in their battery management.

There’s more about buildings in our Buildings and Facilities Management feature.

Temporary structures have come to prominence recently with the previously mentioned shortage of quality warehouse space here and in Europe. Rubb fabric structures have come to the rescue for FTS Eiendom in Norway, streamlining their flow of goods and expanding the storage capacity of the rental warehousing space FTS provide near the port of Fredrikstad.

As goods flow faster through warehouses, safety must not be sacrificed for speed. As our Loading Bay feature points out, these areas account for 25% of workplace transport accidents. Will that figure rise, with the ongoing growth of online shopping, higher throughput rates and greater temptation to cut corners? We’ll keep you posted.

As our Forktruck feature confirms, the major players continue to innovate and drive the market. STILL’s new RX 20 electric truck has won the Counterbalanced Truck category in the IFOY Awards at CEMAT: Yale has added two new tow tractors, the MT70 and MT80. And with injuries from forklift accidents rising, Mitsubishi is leading on safety with the new Mitsubishi Safety Zone system, which uses highpowered LEDs to cast bright, bold red lines on the floor behind and to the sides of a truck.

And finally, with the World Cup football action starting this month, look out for our exclusive World Cup 2018 Planner, presented by UPN and bound into this issue. The first match, Russia vs Saudi Arabia, kicks off on Thursday 14th June, just a few days away. You won’t miss a single game with our planner on your office or warehouse wall! Have a good month.