Canadian Packaging

America’s largest watermelon producer increases its partnership with CHEP

By Canadian Packaging staff   

Food Safety General Sustainability Palletizing Brambles Group CHEP IFCO Melon 1

Melon 1’s partnership with CHEP and its pallet storage program helps increase sustainability and meet seasonal demands.

NASHVILLE, Tennessee—For American consumers, the watermelon is associated the cool refreshing taste of sticky sweetness on a hot summer’s day.

As America’s largest shipper of watermelons, Melon 1 needs to ensure it can safely ship its product anywhere and everywhere is a top priority.

It’s why Melon 1 has partnered with CHEP, America’s largest pallet provider, for nearly 20 years.

Even still, both companies have agreed to expand their partnership, to now include on-site pallet storage and international shipments—both programs are designed to help fulfill watermelon shipments and support a circular supply chain.


“We use CHEP almost exclusively for our domestic shipping, so we know what a difference shared pallets make when it comes to streamlining our supply chain,” says Melon 1 co-owner Rich Chastain. “The financial and environmental savings are terrific. CHEP removes the need for disposable pallets and that’s a win for everybody.”

Since 2009, as a result of Melon 1’s share and reuse of CHEP pooled (shared) pallets, they have realized several sustainability benefits:

  • Reduced nearly 1.3 million pounds of carbon dioxide emissions, an equivalent of removing 1.3 million passenger cars off the road for one year;
  • Kept nearly 1.7 million pounds of solid waste out of landfills.

Since CHEP pooled pallets are not disposed off after use, they sometimes need to be stored—and now storage creates additional value.

Since 2017, Melon 1 has stored CHEP pallets at nine of its 20 facilities. The on-site storage ensures Melon 1 has pallets available and accessible at harvest time.

The international shipments, launched in January 2018, enable Melon 1 to move watermelons from Central America to the U.S. on CHEP pallets. The program helps Melon 1 continue to provide the fresh watermelons retailers need to keep bins full beyond the peak harvest season in the U.S.

“The work we’re doing with Melon 1 is a great example of how collaboration allows us to do even more to solve shared challenges – from taking out transport miles to reducing waste,” says CHEP North America president Laura Nador. “Expanding the partnership expands our ability to cut carbon emissions and costs at the same time.”

CHEP and Melon 1 today released a case study with more details around their longstanding partnership. Read the full piece .

About Melon 1
Melon 1, Inc. is one of the nation’s largest and oldest watermelon grower and shippers. The Melon 1 team has been growing, packing and shipping watermelons collectively for over 30 years. Melon 1 specializes in a superior product which is shipped year-round from one of over 20 packing sheds on the East Coast of the U.S. They supply watermelons to the Northeast, Southeast, Mid-Atlantic and Mid-West. Company information available at

About CHEP
CHEP is a global provider of supply chain solutions serving the consumer goods, fresh food, beverage, manufacturing and retail sectors in more than 60 countries. CHEP offers a wide range of logistics and operational platforms and support services that are designed to increase performance and lower risk while improving environmental sustainability. CHEP’s 11,500-plus employees and more than 275 million pallets and containers deliver comprehensive coverage and exceptional value, supporting more than 500,000 customer touch-points for global brands such as Procter & Gamble, Kellogg’s and Nestlé. CHEP is part of the Brambles Group, the operator of a portfolio that includes specialized container solutions for the food, beverage and automotive sectors, as well as IFCO, the leading provider of reusable plastic containers (RPCs) to the fresh food supply chain globally. For more information, visit


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