Sainsbury’s Waltham Point depot gets set for a record Christmas

Waltham Point Depot - Ambient

Sainsbury’s Waltham Point Distribution Centre in Essex is gearing up for what promises to be its busiest Christmas yet. The enormous distribution centre, which employs over 1,200 people, covers over 700,000 sq ft – the equivalent to nine football pitches - and delivers to 89 Sainsbury’s stores across London and the South East of England.

It is no surprise that Christmas is the busiest time of the year at Waltham Point. The site will deliver 3.2 million cases to Sainsbury’s stores during Christmas week, an extra million when compared to a normal week. Over 1,200 deliveries will go in and out of the site every day during Christmas week and all of these will be carried across 200 conveyor belts, measuring over four and a half miles, and laden with everything from turkey to sprouts to potatoes.

Roger Burnley, Sainsbury’s Managing Director General Merchandise, Clothing and Logistics, said “We plan all year round to ensure our customers have a great Christmas and the 1,200 colleagues at Sainsbury’s Waltham Point play a big role in this. They are hard at work round the clock to ensure that over four million customers in London and the South East can buy everything they need. The colleagues in our distribution network are the unsung heroes of retail and I know they take great pride in doing a great job for customers.”

In Christmas week Waltham Point will send 100,000 bags of brussels sprouts, 200,000 bags of clementines and 15,000 whole salmons into Sainsbury’s stores. Enough cream will be delivered to fill 3,000 baths and enough mulled wine will arrive at the site to fill four Olympic swimming pools.

Sainsbury’s Waltham Point operates 24 hours a day, seven days a week for 364 days of the year with the colleagues enjoying a well deserved day off on Christmas Day.

The Waltham Point Distribution Centre is just one of centres in a wider logistics network that supports over 1,000 Sainsbury’s stores. These Centres deliver 1.2 billion cases to stores each year, the equivalent of 21,000 deliveries each week.


Waltham Point Depot - Chill

Facts & Figures


  • All of our fresh turkeys are British. We expect to sell over 90k Norfolk Black and Bronze turkeys alone
  • We expect to sell over 13m Taste the Difference and by Sainsbury’s pigs in blankets. All made with British pork and wrapped round a chipolata, not a cocktail sausage
  • In Christmas week we expect to sell 6,500 tonnes of potatoes, double a normal week
  • We also expect to sell 1.3 tonnes of sprouts, equating to over 52 million individual sprouts
  • We expect customers to buy 578,500kg of Christmas cheese this year
  • We are sourcing nearly 4m units of Christmas snacking lines i.e. flavoured nuts, pretzels etc
  • Last year we also sold 1.8 million Christmas puddings. 244,000 of these were TTD Cognac Xmas Pudding 900g which was the biggest volume line.
  • We will sell 56m mince pies this year. by Sainsbury’s mince pies will be one of our most popular lines, accounting for 50% of all our mince pie sales


  • Half of all bottles of champagne sold in a supermarket are sold at Sainsbury’s
  • Last Christmas week we sold nearly 250k bottles of Taste the Difference Prosecco and 76k bottles of Taste the Difference Vintage Cava
  • In the four weeks running up to Christmas last year we sold over 344k bottles of Taste the Difference rioja

Non food

  • There are 1128 products in our non-food seasonal range
  • We will sell 5.3 million rolls of wrapping paper - enough to stretch from London to Tokyo and back
  • We will sell nearly three million boxes of Christmas card



About the article

  • Posted on: 17 December 2012
  • Type of article: Press release