Think Different

Think Different

In our "new economy" one of the challenges is to break away from some old habits and patterns of retailing that we have previously been able to rely upon for success. In order to help make your operation work more effectively and profitably during these changing times a willingness to let go of your previous business model and being receptive to new ideas could be the difference in the success or failure of your produce department over the next year.


Below are three simple ideas that just may be of benefit to produce managers who are looking to do a little innovative and creative solutions management.


1) Product Mix

During a challenging economic time people don’t necessarily eat less food, but they do eat differently. Suddenly, it’s less arugula and more broccoli. The less expensive staple foods become more popular while the more “exotic” items are the first to get nixed from the shopping list. Make sure that your ordering reflects these changing times. Perhaps your specialty section shrinks a bit, while your basic items like broccoli, carrots, salad items, etc. take up more real estate within the department. It also helps to have the first items in your merchandising set be your less expensive items. If your shoppers are first greeted by products like seasonal fruit or salad greens, it’s much more likely to have a comforting impact on their shopping experience than if what they first encounter is your specialty mushroom section. Don’t underestimate the impact of perception!


2) Specials

Value is critical during this new economy. Price points are now very important and by having regular specials and promoting popular and seasonal items at a great price, you have gone a long way towards enhancing the image that your store is a destination point for great food with great pricing. It is recommended to have at least 4 items on special at all times in produce – more is even better.


3) Customer Service

Great customer service always works, but is even more important now as your customers may need/want a bit of “hand holding” during tight times. Be available in your department! Talk with you customers, make recommendations, and above all, offer them samples. A friendly face goes a long way and will often be the determining factor in where people shop.


We hope these help.


Simcha Weinstein

Director of Marketing

Albert's Organics