Kenny Lund’s passion for produce is evident and is proven by his company’s commitment.
For example, The Allen Lund Co., La Cañada, Calif., spent about three years upgrading its computer and software networks and installing a $1 million telephone system.
Those investments completed, the third-party transportation broker is now poised to tackle additional growth, said Lund, vice president of support services.
“We were really focused on that, and now that we’re looking up from that work we have a system that can handle doubling of the company. And we’re looking to do that in the next five to 10 years,” he said.
Lund, 48, also has taken on more of an industry leadership role recently, serving as chairman of the United Fresh Supply Chain Logistics Council, as a United Fresh board member. He also was appointed to the executive committee in April.
“I’m a bit overwhelmed, but I’m also excited that they’re bringing transportation much more into the conversation,” he said.
As vice president of supply chain management at the Washington, D.C.-based United Fresh Produce Association, Dan Vaché said he’s proud to have worked alongside Lund on many issues.
“He’s dedicated to the industry and has great values,” Vaché said, adding that Lund brings “great credibility, dedication and a passion for his work. Kenny gives back to the produce community by serving in a variety of leadership positions.”
Founded by Kenny’s father, Allen Lund, in 1976, the firm works with mostly independent owner-operators who have one to three trucks.
Large retailers don’t want to deal with 1,000 separate contractors, so they turn to firms, such as Allen Lund Co.
Over the years, Allen Lund Co. has chosen to specialize in produce and the unique transportation requirements that accompany it, Lund said.
From brokering truck transportation, the firm has expanded to offer full-blown transportation logistics management, which includes order management, scheduling, dispatch, aggregating partial loads, tracking and tracing, and even providing advance payment for carriers.
About three years ago, Allen Lund launched TMS (for transportation management system), a fully integrated logistics management computer program with customer-integrated websites.
Earlier this year, the company opened offices in Alamosa, Colo.; Joplin, Mo.; and Garland, Texas. In October, it opened an office in McAllen, Texas, and one in Grand Rapids, Mich., bringing to 35 the total number of offices it has in 23 states.
The company is selective about how it locates offices. It finds the right people to staff the office and then builds an office around them.
“We invest in people,” Lund said. “We didn’t necessarily have to be in Joplin, but the right people were there. It all depends on the people and not so much the location.
Such was also the case in Alamosa, Colo., when they hired 28-year produce transportation veteran Jerry Robinson.
Lund credits Doug Clark, vice president of business development, for much of the company’s recent growth.
“It was one of my best days in business, when he came on board,” Lund said, referring to Clark’s May 29 hiring.