Oakland International has been selected as a finalist in the Corporate Social Responsibility and Service Excellence categories of the Midlands Family Business Awards 2016 with the winners announced at the University of Birmingham’s Great Hall Awards Ceremony on Thursday 17th November. Oakland International MD, Barry Davies, stated: “We are absolutely delighted to be shortlisted for both the Corporate Social Responsibility and Service Excellence awards which acknowledge Oakland’s culture, commitment and passion as an innovator and forward thinking, responsible family business.” The Oakland Foundation charity, which supports children living in Redditch and Bromsgrove and the surrounding area in need by reason of disadvantage or financial hardship, through activities relating to Health and Nutrition, Education and Sport, was officially opened in 2013 by Her Royal Highness The Princess Royal. Through the Foundation, Oakland International donates some £20,000 per year to the work of the charity and offers the chance for all its employees to volunteer for the Foundation. Since launching, every year more of Oakland’s employees participating and supporting the Foundation’s work within the local community. Mr Davies added: “Launching the Foundation has provided positive employee engagement in the work of the charity, and contributed to creating a highly motivated team which is gaining from the opportunity of taking part in a range of new experiences and helping to develop new skills through their time volunteering for the Oakland Foundation.” Launching their Distress Load Management service in 2005, Oakland has enjoyed positive growth year-on-year, adapting and embracing new and advanced ways of working, and building a reputation for growth through sustainability. Their ongoing investment in a variety of energy efficient technologies and green initiatives has succeeded in radically reducing carbon footprint/energy consumption which has also benefitted their customer and partner networks. This year’s Awards received a high number of excellent nominations across all categories, with Oakland International congratulated for their strong award submissions detailing their work undertaken through The Oakland Foundation charity, and for their award winning Distress Load Management service, whereby they reduce food losses for customer/partners, loss adjusters and hauliers on distressed loads. A practical service providing notable environmental benefits for customers, demonstrating a benefit of circa 80% of produce whilst nothing goes to landfill; to date successfully recovering circa 2000 tonnes of food, with any food waste forwarded to anaerobic digestion plant centre where it is then used for renewable energy. Mr Davies added: “Oakland has always adapted and embraced new ways of working, which has helped build our reputation as a socially responsible family business, and continues to nourish our appetite to add value and leverage from our expertise, whilst gaining competitive advantage.” A multi temperature supply chain specialist, Oakland International supplies UK and Irish retail, discount, convenience and wholesale markets from their UK and Ireland facilities.