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The Mexico Ledger - Mexico, MO
  • Coca-Cola Distribution Center closing

  • Business has been open her for 87 years
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  • After 87 years in business, Mexico's 1116 South Elmwood Drive Coca-Cola Company Distribution Center will be closing its doors, Jan. 19.
    The company was brought to Mexico in 1926 by Oliver Paul James, after purchasing the Mexico Ice and Storage facility. The company moved to a facility on Jefferson Street in 1936.
    The distribution center is owned by the Jefferson City Coca-Cola Bottling Company. The company has recently changed distribution systems from traditional routing to pre-sale routing.
    "The previous distribution method was efficient 20 years ago, but as demand increases from on average 120 stock keeping units to nearly 400, it has become necessary for the company to rearrange its distribution system," said Jefferson City Coca-Cola Bottling Company Manager, Carl Vogel. As a result, the company will only distribute orders in bulk.
    Vogel said with pre-sale routing individuals can access their account and make an order based on account inventory. The order is sent to the warehouse, where it is prebuilt on pallets and then loaded the next day on a tractor trailer, instead of on the traditional delivery trucks. It is then delivered and distributed by vehicles that handle pallets.
    In this way, the truck comes back completely empty, where as with the old system, if all of the loaded stock is not purchased, it comes back to the distribution center. Sometimes the trucks would come back as much as half full.
    The Mexico facility is being closed because the small staff and delivery trucks would be unable to manage such sizable orders.
    Up to 15 individuals were previously employed by the Mexico facility, but according to Vogel, it hasn't employed that many in about five years. Only two workers currently remain.
    Even if there is not a distribution center within the city of Mexico, "Coca-Cola will still be active in the communities we serve," said Vogel.
    He also said that several offers were made to past Elmwood Drive Distribution Center employees to work in the Jefferson City Center.
    The traditional routing system will remain in place for businesses who do not require such sizable orders in a single delivery. These orders can be made by telephone. Vogel said that Jefferson City Coca-Cola Distribution may still use the traditional system with one or two trucks for this purpose.

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