Western Dairy Transport Recognized as 2021 Fleet to Watch
Western Dairy Transport (WDT), the nation’s largest milk and dairy hauler, was recognized as a Fleet to Watch by the Truckload Carriers Association and CarriersEdge 2021 Best Fleet to Drive For program. WDT is the first dairy logistics carrier to be awarded by the only annual program dedicated to uncovering the best workplaces in the U.S. trucking industry.
According to WDT’s CEO David Shelton, the recognition speaks to great strides within his organization – but also the entire dairy industry.
“Being named a 2021 Fleet to Watch speaks as much to the dedication to quality within the dairy industry we haul for, as it does to our team,” said David Shelton, CEO of Western Dairy Transport. “It is an honor to be named among a circle of outstanding motor carriers on a national scale.”
While the COVID-19 pandemic has created many challenges, it also highlighted the reliability of the trucking sector ensuring milk and other foods continued to be delivered from farms to processors. WDT’s “purpose-fueled, community-driven” mentality, unique employee training programs and commitment to local communities has allowed them to keep serving a crucial role in that process while providing the highest-quality service.
WDT recognizes drivers are essential members of the community and trains all entry-level drivers at one of three innovative training academies in Cabool, Missouri, Abernathy, Texas and Bryan, Texas. Driving students get hands-on safety and logistics training in operating trucks with the latest autonomous, or self-driving, technology while also hearing from WDT leadership about company culture. These driver trainings have contributed to WDT’s driver retention rate surpassing the trucking industry average by over 70%.
By honoring their mission to build strong communities and leaders, WDT invests in programs that benefit its employees and the dairy industry they serve. With customer service being at the forefront of company culture, WDT formed a Dispatch University program that takes employees from all departments through professional development training to ensure high quality service throughout the chain of getting milk from farm to customers.
“We were really impressed with Western Dairy Transport’s innovative approach to training not only their drivers, but other employees through their Dispatcher University as well,” said Jane Jazrawy, CEO of CarriersEdge and co-founder of Best Fleets to Drive For. “WDT has the unique ideas and culture of continuous improvement.”
Protecting communities by caring for the environment is another way WDT embodies their mission. WDT has built state-of-the-art facilities that use recycled water to clean and sanitize trucks before heading to the next dairy to pick up milk. One example is the WDT terminal in Portales, New Mexico, an area that has experienced its share of water shortages. The facility has cut water use by 50% by recapturing water and installing a new heated water loop design.
These efforts helped WDT stand out from hundreds of nominations to be named a 2021 Fleet to Watch and honorable mention behind the top 20 Best Fleets to Drive For. The award process involved nomination from a company driver, extensive interviews and 120 surveys submitted by WDT employees covering categories like compensation, professional development and health benefits.
Each day WDT services the dairy industry by hauling over 500 truckloads of milk and ultimately has a hand in providing nutritious dairy foods to over 15 million people across the country. According to Shelton, it absolutely could not be done without every employee on the WDT team.
“We may be a milk and dairy-related logistics company, but our core purpose is to enrich and grow people, their families and communities,” Shelton said. “Every step is framed by our people.”
About Western Dairy Transport
Western Dairy Transport LLC serves the bulk food-grade transportation industry consisting of dairy farmers, dairy processors and food processors. In addition, the firm also serves the dry van soft drink and food processing industry. Western Dairy Transport heritage was founded in 1967 by J.W. Honeycutt JR, in Cabool, Missouri. Through customer–driven organic growth, the firm that began with 10 milk trucks hauling dairies in the Ozarks of Southern Missouri, is now the nation’s largest milk and dairy hauler, serving customers in all 48 States and Mexico. For more information, visit wdtmilk.com.