Being a driver for Sather's Trucking is one sweet ride.
You're hauling a cool load of candy — literally tons of it — to the 48 contiguous states in some of the most highly decorated, brightly colored trailers on the highway.
Adorned earlier this year to resemble the wrappers of the Farley's & Sathers Candy Company treats inside, the trailers are rolling billboards for some of the company's signature products: Fruit Stripe gum, Jujyfruits candy, Now and Later taffy bars, Rain-Blo gum, and more. Even at night, the retroreflective decals shine like beacons.
Are they traffic stoppers? “It's surprising how on the highway, people get up along side that trailer and slow down,” said Gary Erfman, fleet safety and compliance manager for Sathers Trucking Company, which operates as a private carriage company for Farley's & Sathers Candy.
What the candy-loving gawkers may not notice when drooling over the trailers are the brand new 2100A refrigeration units from Carrier's X2 Series.
Erfman marvels about the fuel economy he has achieved with his new Carrier units. Since purchasing 93 earlier this year to replace most of the older refrigeration units on the company's 113 trailers, he has recorded a 30% drop in refrigeration unit fuel consumption. That's compared to the few competitive models still in his fleet.
Headquartered in the small town of Round Lake in rural southwestern Minnesota, Farley's & Sathers Candy Company is one of Americas newest candy companies, created by the combination of some of the country's oldest and best-loved brands. Independently owned since 2002, Farley's & Sathers Candy Company offers more than 900 products and a family of packaged brands that includes both Farley's and Sathers (naturally), as well as Bob's, Trolli, and Heide. Some of those brands have roots dating back more than a century. In addition to Round Lake, Farley's & Sathers manufacturing operations can be found in Creston, Iowa, Chattanooga, Tenn., and Reynosa, Mexico.
The Sathers Trucking Company, which utilizes 40 company tractors and 38 owner-operators, annually logs 8.5 million miles in support of these facilities, between deliveries to customers and third-party distribution “pool points” and back hauls. Temperature control is critical for those deliveries. Freezing temperatures in the winter would ruin candy, as would the heat of the summer.
That's where the 2100A units come into play, maintaining a constant 50°F to 55°F to protect the 2,000 or so cartons inside each trailer. Although the outside may say Super Bubble, the contents are a wild mix of Farley's & Sathers confections.
Because the candy is relatively lightweight, Sathers packs a maximum cube into the trailers. Reliability of the refrigeration system is critical. Part of Carrier's new X2 Series, the 2100A offers the performance and reliability found in Carrier's X Series units, coupled with new aesthetics, superior serviceability, and enhanced sound quality. The units include the Advance microprocessor controller with built in DataLink recorder and pinpoint diagnostics to speed troubleshooting.
As for the sound output, Erfman said, “The new Carriers are just kind of quiet and hum back there.” One might say that the only thing “loud” about the new trailers is the wrapper. And, as with any advertising, that's always a plus.