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Albertsons Volvo VNR electric truck.png Volvo Trucks North America
Albertsons' two Volvo VNR Electric trucks at its Irvine distribution center will supply Albertsons, Vons, and Pavilions supermarkets in Southern California.

Albertsons marks milestone with 100% zero-emission truck delivery

Electric-powered truck and cold trailer ship groceries from DC to store

Albertsons Cos. today made the first commercial 100% zero-emission grocery delivery, with an electric-powered truck and refrigerated trailer transporting goods from its distribution center in Irvine, Calif., to a LEED-certified Albertsons store in Irvine.

Volvo Trucks North America said Friday that Albertsons recently took delivery of two Volvo VNR Electric trucks at its Irvine DC. The trucks represent the first zero-tailpipe emission, battery-electric Class 8 trucks to be deployed in the companywide fleet of Albertsons Cos., the nation’s second-largest supermarket operator, and will supply Albertsons, Vons, and Pavilions stores in Southern California.

Albertsons procured electric-powered transport refrigeration units from Advance Energy Machines (AEM) to pair with the Volvo VNR Electric trucks, according to Volvo. The first delivery using the solution occurred May 28 from the Albertsons DC to the Irvine store, which is verified as a LEED (Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design) “green” facility by the U.S. Green Building Council.

“The partnership Albertsons has built with Volvo Trucks has enabled our fleet to be on the forefront of innovation and to demonstrate our leadership in sustainable transportation,” Tim Burke, vice president of transportation at Albertsons Cos., said in a statement. “We look forward to operating Volvo VNR Electric trucks in our Southern California routes, as they will not only help improve air quality in the communities in which we operate, but the quiet motors will also provide a better working environment for our drivers and grocery store staff.” 

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Albertsons operates 1,400 Class 8 trucks nationwide, and its Southern California fleet, consisting entirely of trucks maded by Volvo, serves 335 stores in the region.

Albertsons operates 1,400 Class 8 trucks nationwide, all of which are certified under the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) SmartWay program as meeting high transportation sustainability and efficiency standards. The Southern California fleet, consisting entirely of trucks maded by Volvo, serves 335 stores in the region, from the Central Coast to the California-Mexico border. 

The Volvo VNR Electric trucks that Albertsons purchased are part of the Volvo LIGHTS (Low Impact Green Heavy Transport Solutions) project, an collaboration between Volvo Trucks North America, the South Coast Air Quality Management District and 12 other organizations to develop and support an ecosystem for battery-electric trucks and equipment in North America.

In April, Albertsons had announced that, in line with the Science Based Targets initiative (SBTi), the company will set an emissions reduction target supporting the United Nations’ Paris Agreement to cut down carbon emissions.

“We are thrilled to continue our long-term partnership with Albertsons Cos., as they begin their journey toward fleet electrification and achieve this momentous accomplishment of a fully zero-emission grocery delivery,” stated Peter Voorhoeve, president of Greensboro, N.C.-based Volvo Trucks North America. “Albertsons’ commitment to corporate sustainability is demonstrated by the steps it is taking to reduce its carbon footprint in its stores and fleet. We are confident that the Volvo VNR Electrics Albertsons is deploying in Southern California will enable the company to not only reduce its emissions, but to make reliable daily deliveries to its grocery stores throughout the region.”ce maintaining VNR Electric models over the past year through the Volvo LIGHTS project and are ready to support our customers with scaled fleet electrification.”

The Volvo LIGHTS project was made possible by an award from the California Air Resources Board (CARB) as part of California Climate Investments (CCI), a statewide initiative that puts billions of Cap-and-Trade dollars to work reducing greenhouse gas emissions, strengthening the economy and improving public health and the environment—particularly in disadvantaged communities. 

"California is committed to investing in programs that help businesses make the switch to zero-emission vehicles and grow the market for these technologies,” said CARB board member Gideon Kracov. “I commend Albertsons for taking meaningful steps to reduce air pollution in California communities adjacent to its distribution centers and transportation corridors.”

Overall, Boise, Idaho-based Albertsons Cos. operates 2,277 retail stores in 34 states and the District of Columbia under such banners as Albertsons, Safeway, Vons, Jewel-Osco, Shaw's, Acme, Tom Thumb, Randalls, United Supermarkets, Pavilions, Star Market, Haggen, Carrs, Kings Food Markets and Balducci’s Food Lovers Market. The company’s operations also include 1,727 pharmacies, 400 associated fuel centers, 22 distribution centers and 20 manufacturing facilities.

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