Anne Bruce Safeway plans to open a new regional distribution centre in its traditional Scottish stronghold as it vies with Tesco and Asda to be the region's number one food retailer. Safeway logistics director Lawrence Christensen said that although the supermarket was concentrating on refurbishing its estate, expansion would continue in Scotland. He said: "We are planning ahead and part of the plan is to open a new depot further north. We are already the only supermarket that covers the northern edges." Safeway currently has two regional distribution centres and a composite depot on the Scottish borders, and delivers by rail and ferry to remoter parts of Scotland. The supermarket is also planning to spend £7m on integrating its transport systems for supply chain efficiencies and to cut down its delivery fleet. Christensen said: "Our Pulsar project will bring all the different components of our transport IT systems together in one real time network. With one system there will be synergy benefits at all sites, reducing our fleet which currently consists of 850 tractors and 1,400 trailers." Upgrades to supply chain infrastructure will include radio frequency tags for lorries to track deliveries. The project will mean Safeway is able to extend its ex-factory gate pricing and backhauling regimes, said Christensen. "With one supply brain we will be able to pull in all suppliers and extend factory gate pricing and backhauling. We are already the largest supermarket backhauler, even backhauling from suppliers by train in Scotland." And Safeway is also trialling out of hours deliveries, having established a code of practice with a number of local authorities. Christensen said: "We are using quiet lorries for 24/7 deliveries." {{NEWS }}