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It’s no secret that being a foodservice distributor is a competitive market. There is a lot of competition, and larger companies tend to have innate advantages, especially when it comes to relationships with trusted food suppliers, product minimums, and cash flow. It can be challenging for newer or smaller distribution companies to break into the market and grow their product offerings and customer base. By nature, the needs and desires of distributors are largely the opposite of those of the food vendors they Partner with. Because the food vendors are the keepers of the products the distributors sell, and food vendors can control who they sell products to, when, in what quantity, and at what cost, the weight of adapting largely falls on the distributors. That’s where working with a leading foodservice redistributor can help. Foodservice redistribution companies like Honor Foods can help bridge the gap between food distributors and trusted food suppliers. Leading foodservice redistributors can purchase products the way the trusted food suppliers want and sell them in a way that benefits food distributors. This helps decrease the barrier of entry for new or smaller distributors by affording them the same opportunities as their large competitors. Here are 14 advantages to working with a leading foodservice redistributor like Honor Foods as a food distributor.
One of the most significant challenges for food distributors when working directly with manufacturers is meeting quantity minimums. Food vendors benefit from selling large quantities. Moving large quantities can be difficult for distributors, especially when it is a new or less popular item. This also makes it difficult for jobbers or smaller distributors to access the same food product catalog as their larger competitors. By using food redistribution, distributors can purchase items in as little as one case because they can order multiple different products from different vendors, all from one place, eliminating the need for manufacturer product minimums.
Storing products can be a hassle and expensive. A lot of space, knowledge, and equipment is required to run warehousing safely and effectively. This can be one of the most significant barriers to entry for distributors simply because they don’t have a way to store products in the quantity they need to purchase from trusted food suppliers. In addition, there are often limits on how frequently products can be bought from manufacturers due to the demand and market size. Distributors don’t need to store nearly as much product by working with foodservice redistribution companies. The redistribution company handles the bulk of the warehousing side, and the distributor can focus on getting the product to the end users as needed. With leading redistributors like Honor Foods, food distributors can also schedule multiple deliveries or pick-ups in a week. At Honor Foods, we have some Partners that pick up daily and many with deliveries numerous times a week. That puts the need to store and pick items on us while the distributor focuses on getting the product to the end user.
Because the foodservice redistributor stores the bulk of the product, that puts more of the risk and hassle of storage on us instead of the food distributor. By using a foodservice redistribution company, it falls on the redistributor to make sure the product is turned before expiration and to ensure they can sell all the products they buy. It falls on the foodservice redistribution company to determine best practices for storing and picking large amounts of product. The redistribution company works with trusted food suppliers to ensure they have enough products and coordinate deliveries. This takes some of the biggest challenges off the distributor and allows them to do what they do best: get the product to the end user and keep items off the 86’d menu.
Food distributors can access a more extensive food product catalog by working with a leading foodservice redistributor like Honor Foods. The way redistribution works is that the foodservice redistribution companies buy products in bulk from trusted food suppliers and sell the product in smaller quantities to food distributors. The advantage of this to food distributors is that distributors are not forced to purchase large quantities of items from trusted food suppliers that they don’t need just to meet product minimums set forth by the manufacturer. Because food distributors can buy only what they need, turn it quickly, and not have to worry about large amounts of storage, they can offer a larger food product catalog to their restaurant and foodservice Partners, knowing that they can purchase as little as one case of a particular product from Honor Foods. This also allows food distributors to support end users wishing to test new menu items or try new products without a huge commitment or investment. Food distributors can also offer the entire catalog of their food redistribution Partners, which for Honor Foods Partners is over 3,000 products from over 300 trusted food suppliers. This, in turn, makes it easier for food distributors to grow, offering end users the opportunity to purchase a multitude of items all from one place, providing convenience and efficiency.
Working with a leading foodservice redistributor can allow food distributors access to bulk pricing without buying in bulk, allowing them to be more competitive with their competition. While it is a common misconception that adding another link in the supply chain increases prices, that is actually a myth. Foodservice redistribution companies like Honor Foods have agreements with trusted food suppliers that allow them to keep the pricing in line with what you would pay if you purchased product directly from the manufacturer. In addition, foodservice redistribution companies work hard to collaborate with trusted food suppliers to create a mutually beneficial relationship that allows distributors to still access programs they have negotiated with the manufacturers on items purchased through redistribution, such as rebates, shelter, food shows, flyer allowances, DSR spiffs, bill-back promises, and more.
When purchasing products directly from food vendors, there are often gaps between when you place the order and when you are able to receive it. This gap is the result of supply and demand. In addition, the lead time lengthens when you must wait until you require a certain quantity of an item to order. By working with a leading foodservice redistributor, you can decrease lead times and increase your customer service.
Especially when working with Honor Foods, which specializes in providing products from dairy food suppliers, it is easy to schedule a delivery or pick-up whenever you need it, even if it is between your typically scheduled day. Because of our dairy specialty, our distributors tend to get deliveries more frequently due to the innate product shelf life. It also means distributors are visiting their restaurant Partners more regularly. Familiarity can often build trust, and it definitely breeds convenience. Suppose a distributor is already delivering dairy items multiple times a week. In that case, it is easy to slowly have that distributor bring other items, too, decreasing the amount of Partners needed, creating more efficiency and less risk.
Because of the increased deliveries, adding additional items a restaurant may need is easy. Because of our extensive product catalog, it is easy for a distributor who works with us to fulfill that request. This frequency associated with dairy products allows our Distribution Partners an opportunity to grow into new product areas. While we specialize in dairy, we also have an extensive frozen and dry food supplier network that allows our distributors a wide variety of items to offer their customers.
Due to shorter lead times and access to a wide variety of products quickly, working with a leading foodservice redistributor allows food distributors to provide increased customer service levels. Nothing is worse than taking a popular dish off the menu because the restaurant doesn’t have the ingredients. If a distributor who was scheduled to deliver a dairy product can get the missing crab cakes as well, it won’t go unnoticed. In addition to allowing food distributors to provide increased service levels to their customers, working with a leading foodservice redistributor also increased service levels for the distributor. Working with multiple food vendors as a distributor can be time-consuming. Having to try to track down needed products isn’t always easy. By working with a leading foodservice redistribution company like Honor Foods, you have a point of contact dedicated to ensuring you have what you need when you need it.
Having products out-of-stock is one of the biggest causes of a food distributor losing business. When a product is out of stock, the end user will rush to find it, and if that means their typical distribution Partner doesn’t have it, they will turn to someone else. Often, they will keep purchasing that product from whoever could step up and find it when no one else could. To reduce the loss of business, reducing your out-of-stock rates as a food distributor is vital. Working with a leading foodservice redistributor like Honor Foods reduces the out-of-stock rate significantly because you have a source to get more product quickly when you need it. A food redistribution company stocks enough products to supply not just you but many distributors, meaning they will likely have product available when you need it.
In addition to helping prevent the dreaded out-of-stock predicament, working with a leading foodservice food redistributor helps recover if another product source or your end user runs out of a product. Maybe a customer decides on a last-minute special and needs more supply, or another Partner had supply chain issues that delayed a shipment. Working with a food redistribution company is another person you can call who keeps large quantities of many items readily available. In addition, it is a create source to find products to substitute if necessary.
If you have ever watched Shark Tank, you know that cash flow is king. The secret to cash flow is not having much money tied up in inventory. If you work with a foodservice redistribution company, you eliminate the large minimums necessary to work with trusted food suppliers, allowing you to have less money tied up in inventory. By being able to only buy what you need, you don’t have to worry about losing money on expired items you can’t turn.
How do you know how much you need of what product? How do you know the latest foodservice trends and what you will need to provide your customers for them to stay relevant? How do you determine how much inventory to stock so you don’t have products you can’t turn but also don’t run out of a product your customer needs, forcing them to turn to a different distributor and risking you losing that business for good? It’s a delicate balance, and the most straightforward answer is food redistribution. Food redistribution is like having a pot of gold at your disposal that you aren’t responsible for guarding. You have a place you can turn to when you need more product and can trust you will have it quickly. It allows you not to have to overstock your inventory, just not to understock the products you need. It alleviates some of the risk that the redistribution company absorbs.
There is great value in having one source for multiple items. It allows you to coordinate billing with one Partner. It enables you to coordinate transportation to one place. It allows there to be one process for obtaining products. It allows for one point of contact. It will enable for one order, delivery, and invoice. One is just simpler, quicker, and easier to manage. By working with a redistribution company, you can get all your items from multiple food vendors in one place, allowing you to enjoy the efficiency and convenience of one.
Working with a leading foodservice redistributor is a great way for food distributors to grow their business, alleviate risk, and provide the best possible service for their restaurant and foodservice Partners. Foodservice Redistribution helps food distributors maintain cash flow by alleviating product minimums from food vendors, allowing food distributors to be more agile. In addition, working with a leading foodservice redistributor allows food distributors to have access to a more extensive food product catalog, complete with a wider variety of products from hundreds of trusted food suppliers. In addition, our Team has extensive industry knowledge and experience. We understand what it takes for a food distributor to be successful and are committed to providing you with the best possible service, making your business operations as simple as possible. We pride ourselves on being a “distributor’s distributor” and are here to help you make it happen for your customers. If you are a food distributor, consider these 14 benefits of working with a leading foodservice redistributor before you place your next order and let us show you the value working with Honor Foods can bring to your business.
Check out our product catalog or contact a representative today to see how Honor Foods, a leading foodservice redistributor, can help your food distribution business grow and gain efficiency.
About Honor Foods
Honor Foods, a Burris Logistics Company, was founded in 1949 as a redistributor of prepared foods. Since then, Honor Foods has grown into a premier provider of frozen, refrigerated, dry, and dairy products representing more than 300 brand-name food suppliers and carrying more than 3,000 items. For more information about Honor Foods, please visit honorfoods.com.