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November 19, 2013

Move to new warehouse snarls alcohol deliveries

State commission vows improvement

Since the beginning of this month, Wally Heinrich has noticed a change in the alcohol deliveries he receives at Atkinson Country Club.

“Our deliveries are coming a day or two late,” said Heinrich, food and beverage manager at the country club. “When you’re used to a seamless process, when that doesn’t happen, it’s a little unsettling.”

The delayed deliveries are the result of a big change occurring at the New Hampshire Liquor Commission. The commission is transferring all its products from a warehouse in Nashua to a new, 247,000-square-foot distribution facility in Bow run by Exel, a logistics company, as part of a 20-year contract. Exel also started coordinating the delivery of the products from Bow to the state’s 77 liquor outlets as of Nov. 1.

In the first 30 months of the new contract, the commission projects approximately $3 million in savings as a result of the new contract. The commission projects its business partners and consumers will save approximately $4 million in the same period of time.

New Hampshire Liquor Commission Chairman Joseph Mollica said yesterday the transition has hit a few bumps.

“In a transition of this size, there are going to be some challenges,” Mollica said. “We feel we are addressing items as they see them.”

Mollica said nearly a million cases of products are being stored in the Bow facility, including 750,000 that are being transferred from Nashua.

“We have 10 tractor trailer loads a day, transferring products from Nashua,” he said. “We have more loads coming from all over the world, and we have to replenish our outlets and licensees. If there is an opportunity for a bottleneck to happen, this is the time it’s going to take place.”

Andy Day, owner of the Cask and Vine in downtown Derry, said the process has been frustrating.

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