Quality drivers are key to Browns Stockfeed success

Behind the distinctive red and white colours of the Browns Stockfeed fleet is a passion for quality and a desire to ensure customers are satisfied every time

Browns Stockfeed started life in 2003 when the two Brown brothers Chris and Cameron founded the company together. Based in Leongatha in south-west Victoria, Browns Stockfeed transports a range of agricultural products such as fertilizer and grain. Their main clients are dairy farmers who they deliver stockfeed to. 

The company started out with just one truck, one mill and transport yard, and three employees. Browns Stockfeed today owns 30 trucks and employees 75 people across five sites across Victoria, including 3 Mill sites, a Retail Farm Supplies Store and a workshop. 

Chris says the knowledge and professional service Browns offers customers helps them stand out from other operators in regional Victoria. 

“We provide a high-quality service and good nutritional advice. Our grain helps the farmers keep their cows happy and producing milk which in turn means profits for them,” says Chris. 

“Our sales team are nutritionist who are able to formulate rations for our clients that we process and deliver.”

Farming and transport is familiar territory for the Browns brothers. They grew up on a farm in Kongwak not far from Leongatha and their parents also ran a small transport company themselves. 

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The pride and joy of Browns is their impressive trucks, painted in the company’s red and white colours. The trucks recently took out the Best Fleet award at the Castlemaine truck show in central Victoria. Chris says the company had shopped around a bit in the past with trucks, but now the fleet is exclusively Kenworths.   

“The Kenworth fleet with their Cummins engine are good, reliable trucks. We don’t have too many issues with them, they go very well, and our local dealership looks after us,” says Chris. 

“Our stockfeed needs to be delivered on time every time. So, it’s important that the trucks are never off the road for too long when there is a problem.” 

Chris says there are other benefits to maintaining a high-quality fleet as well. 

“Having a nice fleet that’s well presented definitely helps to attract good drivers,” says Chris. 

“We don’t turn a lot of staff over. We tend to keep our drivers happy and work with them for a while.” 

Having been in the business for nearly twenty years, Browns Stockfeed has seen a lot of change in the industry already. The company has been an early adopter of telematic technology for its truck fleet, withsystems that monitor driving data. Chris says they started using electronic work diaries (EDMs) and telematic monitoring systems several years ago. 

“Our managers can tell clients instantly exactly where every truck is and how soon they can expect their deliveries,” says Chris.

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“It’s made life across the whole business a lot easier. Not only can we see everything that’s happening but our drivers know when they need to take a break.

“It takes a lot of the anxiety out of the job for them.” 

Carting grain to farmers mean that the Browns Stockfeed fleet are operating on rural road networks most of the time and so they are limited in how much they can carry.

The fleet has recently been experimenting with different PBS combinations to maximise their efficiency. 

“A 30-metre road train is just not viable in the areas we service,” says Chris.  

Browns has found the manoeuvrability and payload capacity of a truck and dog combination works well for farming applications. 

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Brown’s success can be attributed to its commitment to high quality in all aspects of its business, be that high quality equipment, knowledgeable nutritionists or capable drivers that are trusted to do their job the way they see fit. Browns says it doesn’t skimp on investing in its people and vehicles. 

“It’s about attracting good drivers. Our drivers are always the face of the company,” says Chris. 

Though they have already had a great run with 19 years under their belt, Chris says they’re just getting started and have plans to continue expanding across the state. Browns have just purchased a new mill site for manufacturing pellets in central Victoria. 

“To be manufacturing pellets ourselves is a big game changer for us,” says Chris. 

Though the company is relatively young it’s clear it has a big future ahead of it.

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