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Blog May 2021 Updated July 2023

Transporting animals to abattoirs: it’s all about efficiencies

Transporting animals isn’t merely about logistics, which is complex by itself, but you also have to worry about their welfare. EU and UK regulations mandate that before a journey even begins, transporters must have arrangements in place to minimise the length of the journey, as well as meet the animals’ needs during that time.

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Jan Tønder

Jan Tønder

Intelligent Optimization Solution Advisor

Transporting animals isn’t merely about logistics, which is complex by itself, but you also have to worry about their welfare. EU and UK regulations mandate that before a journey even begins, transporters must have arrangements in place to minimise the length of the journey, as well as meet the animals’ needs during that time.

This is just the surface of what you must do. Additional regulations are in place for animals by species, age, and size. Space allowances, sanitised trucks, journey logs, authorisation and certificates are needed accordingly.

Given the complexities involved in transporting animals, smart planning is the key.

You’ve got to:

  • Maximise filling ratios
  • Minimise mileage
  • Make certain animal wellbeing
  • Align capacity on each abattoir with inbound transports
  • Ensure that each transport makes economical sense

Delays of any kind can have a significant impact on your operating costs, schedule, and alignment with abattoir’s’ stable capacity and production, resulting in backlogs. On top of that, there's an ever-changing order pool of pickups and deliveries to abattoirs. You need to plan for the right number of people in shifts to correctly handle the animals upon delivery.

Efficiency is therefore of prime importance. If you can time everything just right – even in the face of last-minute changes – then you can minimise the time animals spend on trucks while also reducing your operating costs.

That’s easier said than done, however.

Your goal: operational efficiency

Optimising your execution and follow-up so that costs are kept down demands an in-depth understanding of the processes involved. With innovative technology designed specifically for the industry, this becomes infinitely easier. AMCS Livestock Planner is the next-generation, scalable, cloud-based solution with rich functionality. It monitors your trucks, health certificates, and events that occur throughout the day.

It not only handles your legal transport constraints, freeing your planners to focus on other tasks, but carries out detailed route planning and real-time execution. All loads, orders, pick-ups, deliveries – every aspect is optimised so that your business works efficiently.

Manual versus algorithms

Schedules have to retain a degree of flexibility due to the variables involved in transporting livestock to abattoirs. Otherwise, you lose agility, and it’s agility that enables you to react to constantly changing events.

Planning manually will be incredibly time-consuming. The rigorous algorithms of AMCS Livestock Planner can do this quickly, optimising and re-optimising scheduling throughout the day as events change, providing the robust support your planners need.

Complying with health regulations

You receive an order. You have an available truck nearby. In ordinary logistics, you send that truck. In livestock logistics, you have to consider animal health and welfare regulations.

Various certifications and types of health grading that apply to animals determine order of collection. The system can let you know right away if the orders can be inserted that day, or if they’ll have to wait until the truck has been thoroughly cleaned and quarantined for 12 hours. You’ll receive warnings if your plan violates regulations, and the suggestions on what you should do. Whatever rules apply to your country can be configured into AMCS Livestock Planner.

Yes or No

AMCS automatically shows you the economy of each transport plan, enabling you to stay on top of costs. You’re also shown the consequence of each plan – call it the knock-on effect – so that you can determine whether or not you want to go ahead.

Imagine: connected stakeholders

AMCS Livestock Planner can integrate with your current systems and even your customer systems. Imagine this: farmers can access a producer portal and enter loads for pickup. And as orders come in throughout the day, they’re imported from your ERP into AMCS Livestock Planner, and the schedule and routes are re-optimised. But let’s not stop there. AMCS Livestock can integrate with the abattoir’s production system too. Seamlessly connected to your stakeholders, including subcontractors, this is a tool for collaboration and communication. You can share information to save valuable time and gain efficiencies.

As it happens: your operations in real time

By integrating into your in-cab mobile system, you can send route lists directly to drivers. You can send them updates in real time so there’s no time lost in taking appropriate action. Likewise, you can receive the status of an event in real time. You can even follow execution in real-time.

For customers, late collections and deliveries are minimised and they learn right away of any delays. This is how you improve customer satisfaction.

It’s also how you align your transport with abattoirs’' accelerate top-line growth.

At a glance

AMCS Livestock Planner:

  • Between 5% and 25% savings in overall transport costs
  • Applies regulatory requirements in planning process
  • Automatic warnings when plans fail to comply with regulations or company policy
  • Can use fully automated, semi-automated or manual planning
  • Integrate stakeholders into transportation scheduling process
  • Automated import of orders into the order system (whether integrated or another external system) – no lost or overlooked orders
  • Test effects of new policies and prices changes through simulation
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