Efficient Distribution Turns New Cookie Into a Sweet Success

Customer: Specialty Cookie Manufacturer

WSI Services: Warehousing / Distribution, Fulfillment, Transportation 

Challenge: Help a new packaged foods company establish its distribution network from the ground up.

Solution: The company was in startup mode with an innovative entry into the competitive packaged cookie market. What they didn’t have yet was a way to get their products into consumers’ hands. The up-and-coming company came to WSI to leverage their retail distribution expertise and help establish the new cookie’s distribution network.

The first step was to set up distribution centers on each coast to give the company nationwide reach. Through a collaborative approach, WSI worked with the customer to create a network consisting of both WSI facilities and those of other 3PL’s. WSI’s Transportation group handled routing and freight scheduling, identifying ways to optimize cost efficiency at various shipment volumes and product roll-out rates. The customer was able to leverage WSI’s global transportation volume to obtain significant discounts – securing 40-45% lower LTL pricing than the customer could have negotiated on their own.

Prior to the critical launch phase, WSI Customer Service prepared a comprehensive training manual and conducted on-site training sessions to communicate customer expectations and process requirements, ensuring a smooth launch and consistent performance going forward.

One of the most valuable roles WSI played was in applying their retail experience to help the customer get their cookies in stores efficiently, accurately and in compliance with complex retailer routing guides. “Retail markets present a daily challenge; needs change daily and each retailer has different requirements.” explained WSI sales representative Denny LaBarre. “WSI knows the right way to ship to all major national retailers.” WSI’s retail knowledge and focus helped the customer avoid costly chargebacks – from reconfiguring product cartons so cases didn’t overhang the pallets, to educating the customer about specific labeling requirements for different retailers.

WSI also worked closely with the customer to optimize their fulfillment process. WSI recommended changes to pallet configurations, maximizing the product’s space efficiency and reducing the number of pallets shipped by nearly one-third for significant freight savings. WSI reduced retailers’ shortage/overage claims through improved communication about the different pallet configurations due to case size. Finally, WSI worked with the customer’s quick inventory turn needs to meet demand when product sales far exceeded forecasts. “The product often comes in and goes out the same day,” observed Warehouse Manager James Ribeiro. “Their business requires us to be very flexible. We can adjust up and down according to the customer’s needs.” 

With a nationwide distribution network, over 40 years’ retail logistics expertise and a deep commitment to reliable service, WSI is ready to help your supply chain operate more efficiently. To learn more, give us a call at 920.831.3700 or email us.

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