New Be Retail Ready workshop designed to help firms succeed in supermarkets


Being a successful supermarket supplier can be a challenge for many of New Zealand’s food businesses, especially those new to the channel. There are certain requirements and costs involved that if not understood early, can quickly undermine the best retail entry plans.

“We often come across companies with fantastic looking and tasting products who are struggling because they have underestimated what is involved, from food safety and labelling compliance, to the margin expectations of supermarkets and the costs to service these supermarkets. If firms don’t work these into their pricing at the beginning, they will fight to get ahead”, points out John Morgan, Chief Executive of FoodSouth.

There is a multitude of products and brands occupying our supermarket shelves. This space is valuable real estate so firms need to know how to cut through the clutter and entice people to come back. Their product must create value for their consumer as well as the retailer. From the retailer’s perspective they will be looking for the supplier who offers them the best profit making potential from the shelf-space available.

“Companies need to realise that getting their product on to a supermarket shelf is only just the beginning; it is certainly not the end, and there is a lot of prior planning, effort and resource required to remain there,” explains John.

Recognising these challenges, FoodSouth approached Business and Marketing Consultants, Estute to develop a program that educates food companies on how to prepare themselves for the retail channel and ensure their presence lasts. This resulted in the creation of a series of interactive workshops ‘Be Retail Ready - how to get your product to market’.

The Be Retail Ready program starts with a half day overview of the retail environment, outlining what is required to be successful. This is followed by a series workshops which delve deeper into certain topics – Developing your Value Proposition, Understanding how Supermarkets Operate, Trade Marketing and Promotional Pricing Strategies and Pitching your Product. Businesses are able to attend as many or as few workshops as they like. Ultimately it depends on the needs of the business and where they are having challenges. A 30 minute one-on-one session after the main Be Retail Ready workshop is also offered to participants and can help identify key opportunities for their firms and what they could do to achieve these.

To ensure the program content is robust and up to date, Estute developed the program in conjunction with New Zealand’s two main retailers Foodstuffs and Progressive Enterprises, as well as financial advisor, KPMG and market research specialist, Nielsen.

The program is suited to any firm operating in the food and beverage, and nutraceutical sectors. They may be thinking about entering this channel or wanting to increase their presence. For established firms, the workshops can serve as a training course for new staff.

The workshops are being offered across the country through the New Zealand Food Innovation Network with the anticipation that more new food products will succeed.

If you would like to learn more about these workshops, please contact your local Business Development Manager