6 Noteworthy Trends the Dutch Food Industry is Finding from COVID Round 2 (Part 4)

Part 4 of our 6-part series continues today to help the foodservice industry understand what food distributors are doing to manage inventory uncertainties.

As a second wave of COVID-19 continues to spread in Europe, we’ve been gathering some intel from our Dutch customers that may prove useful in this area.

So far we’ve covered rationalizing assortments in Part 1, longer receiving windows in Part 2. and consumers paying for scarcity in Part 3.

What else is the food industry doing to cope with COVID-19 disruption?

Trend #4:  Sales Soaring, Especially Luxury Items

The great news is that supermarket sales are (still) up. Dutch grocers easily broke Christmas records in the beginning of March. Food sales are not up because of price hikes. Sales are soaring because of hoarding and – as we mentioned earlier – indulgence.

People are willing to splurge on their happiness at a time when happiness is generally harder to find. Luxury items like chocolates, alcohol and coffee may harbor untapped margin which you are not taking advantage of.

Given the food industry’s huge number of EANs at various stores, locations and channels, these companies lack the time to analyze demand on each and every one of these items, every day. It would require an army of 5,000 mathematicians and another 5,000 man-hours/day to communicate demand plans to other functional business units so that they can execute quickly on sales opportunities.

That does NOT mean you should leave margin on the table! Integrated Business Planning solutions (also referred to as Sales and Operations Planning or S&OP) will help you align precise demand and supply plans across the organization for synchronized execution.

Stay tuned for the rest of our series! Or click the image below to learn more about IBP software.

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