Hy-Vee Customer Story: Grocery Distribution Equipment for the Long Haul

A growing company needs good partners. Throughout our 120 years, Great Dane has partnered with countless businesses to provide top-quality products, take a hands-on role with equipment replacement needs, and take care of any issues in a timely manner. It is our goal to help all of our partners get the maximum life cycle out of every piece of Great Dane equipment in their fleet.

One of those partners, Hy-Vee, has been providing “good merchandise, appreciative service, and low prices” for a formidable 90 years. And with Great Dane working closely with Hy-Vee to help them meet their goals, this partnership has a golden past and a bright future.

A Grocery Company with a Time-Honored Reputation

In 1930, Charles Hyde and David Vredenburg opened a small store in Beaconsfield, Iowa, which grew to become Hy-Vee—a grocery company known for exactly what they set out to achieve: excellent service and reasonable prices.

It is now an employee-owned company that encourages each of its more than 75,000 employees to help guide it. Today, Hy-Vee is synonymous with quality, variety, value, and superior customer service. Their fleet of over 250 reefers and 250 dry vans deliver produce, frozen foods, general merchandise, dry grocery, and specialty foods across an eight-state area in the Midwest.

Trailer Specifications for Fleet-Specific Needs

Over the decades, the way Hy-Vee transports its products has evolved. The fleet started with 40-foot stainless ribbed-sided, spring-ride heavy trailers. Today, it comprises 53-foot by 102-inch-wide smooth aluminum-sided Great Dane Everest refrigerated trailers and Champion dry vans with air ride suspensions.

“There are a lot of the little special features on the Great Dane trailers that make them our number one choice for our business,” says Jim Moore, Group VP of Transportation and Warehousing. “We have tried several other brands, but Great Dane trailers fit our business model.”

For Hy-Vee’s dry freight trailers, the logistics post and SSL Galvalume steel lining option are key, as well as durable floor systems and the EnduroGuard rear frame.

Hy-Vee’s reefers have dual and triple evaporators. The interior of an Everest trailer can be divided into sections that are kept at different temperatures, which allows Hy-Vee to transport frozen and temperature-sensitive items on the same trailer. Hy-Vee relies on the Everest’s high-performing sidewall insulation system to provide superior thermal integrity. Everest’s built-in antimicrobial protection, Microban®, is another huge benefit for the fleet. The Microban technology, exclusive to Great Dane’s PunctureGuard and ThermoGuard linings, can significantly cut down on cleaning effort and maintenance time.

Maximizing New Trailers and ROI

To maximize the fleet’s return on investment (ROI), Hy-Vee replaces their reefers every eight years and replaces dry vans every 12 years. With every new trailer, Great Dane is there to make sure Hy-Vee has everything they need.

Hy-Vee relies on its Great Dane retail location for help spec’ing and maintaining the trailers. Moore said, “Our Great Dane dealership, Jim Hawk Truck Trailers, has been a great partner, meeting our needs from timely delivery of the new product, ready to be put into service when it arrives, to handling all of our warranty needs. They understand our business needs and keep us informed of changes that we can benefit from.”

Durable and Premium Trailer Equipment

It doesn’t matter if a business has been around for a day or a hundred years, no company has time for partnerships that don’t exceed expectations and lead to a brighter future for all involved. When you’ve built your reputation for top-quality merchandise and premium customer service for as long as Hy-Vee and Great Dane have, that’s a partnership you keep.

For as long as Hy-Vee has its fleet on the roads, Great Dane will be here to provide durable, top-of-the-line equipment to help all of our partners exceed their goals.

Explore Great Dane’s entire line of Everest refrigerated trailers.

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