Toyota Material Handling Australia (TMHA) has signed an exclusive long-term agreement with the national fresh produce company LaManna Premier Group (LPG).
LPG has the largest forklift fleet in the Australian fresh-produce sector, with units in 17 locations and all five mainland States.
The new agreement was signed in December 2017 and covers LPG's entire national fleet, which became a combined fleet when LaManna and Premier merged in 2016.
The agreement is aimed at raising safety, energy efficiency, maintenance and service standards.
Initially, it will see TMHA supply more than 50 new forklifts in April-May to upgrade the LPG fleet, as well as retrofitting additional safety equipment to all existing machines.
LPG's COO Dean Gall said the new agreement will bring world-class health and safety standards to the forefront through the group's national fleet and hence will benefit all LPG's employees.
"Working on the new agreement together. TMHA has supported LPG in providing safety features that will assist both our drivers and all warehouse employees," he said.
"LPG has enjoyed enormous growth over recent times and TMHA has been with us throughout they journey, providing extremely reliable service and support to our national operations.
"We have come to rely on the quality and reliability of the TMHA fleet and the prompt service it provides."
Mr Gall also highlighted the importance of quality and reliability in a time-sensitive industry, where early morning starts are the norm.
"In our fast-paced supply chain, reliability in our equipment is vital. TMHA has consistently provided reliable equipment.
"The early morning starts in all markets and farming operations means we must have safe, reliable equipment at all times. TMHA has always ensured machinery is ready to go prior to the day's work starting.
"TMHA's parts and service network has provided the support for many years, ensuring that the LPG business continues to provide on-time service to our customers with well-run machinery.
"In addition, LPG works closely with TMHA in such as fleet management, which is evident in the new agreement," Dean Gall said.
TMHA COO Steve Takacs said agreement with LPG highlights the world-class safety of Toyota forklifts, one of five elements of the Toyota Advantage.
"Toyota leads the world in research and development investment on forklift trucks, and that shows in world-leading safety features such as our System of Active Stability," he said.
"We're very pleased with the LPG partnership, because we're delivering on key LPG needs - providing market-leading equipment that is safer and more efficient - backed by a comprehensive preventative maintenance plan and world-leading service."
TMHA Melbourne branch area sales manager Scott Bocksette has managed Victorian operations for LaManna and Premier for five years, and has now been appointed National Account Manager for LPG.
"In addition to the new forklifts, one of the key initiatives in the new agreement is retro-fitting all the existing units with interlocking seatbelts and a Blue Safety Light," Scott Bocksette said.
"The Blue Light beam increases safety by appearing on the ground, to inform pedestrians and other forklift operators of a forklift's presence."
Scott Bocksette said the majority of the new forklifts to be delivered in April/May are 1.8-tonne payload Toyota 8FG18 models - the favoured forklift in produce markets nationally - and also uses Toyota BT powered pallet movers.
Toyota has been selling forklifts in Australia for 50 years and has enjoyed a strong presence in major fresh-produce markets.
All Toyota Material Handling product lines, including Toyota, BT and Raymond product, benefit from the five Toyota Advantage elements quality, durability and reliability, safety, parts and service, total cost of ownership, and business solutions.
The national Toyota forklift parts and service operation includes more than 450 service support staff, trained to the highest levels in the industry, and 300 mobile service vans.