PET Food Processing - June 2020 - 62

DISTRIBUTION

They may be big,
but the grocery,
drug, mass and
club retail channels
can only stock a
certain number of
products and it can
be challenging for a
brand to stand out in
that environment.
©trongnguyen-stock.adobe.com

treat offerings. This includes a growing number of small
players catering to the market for health and wellness products using unique flavors and age-specific formulations. As
more look to enter the pet food and treat space, they're leveraging technology with online e-commerce as the biggest
area of growth.
But just being online is not enough. Scioscia cautioned
a high level of organizational readiness is necessary to
make e-commerce successful. Despite this, VAI said the
supply chain remains underfunded relative to its intricacy.
Complexities created within organizations by silos between vital players like sales and marketing leave data and
analytics underleveraged to grow sales.
"The technology side of the equation is challenging and
not every company knows of the best ways to take advantage of all the different marketplaces to sell to and how to
get product out to the channels," Scioscia said.
While the go-to channel options often include big
players such as Amazon, Alibaba and Chewy, Scioscia
acknowledged it can also be beneficial to have a tool to
assist in handling the multiple channels. To be more effective, he recommended exploring a cloud-based inventory
management solution such as SellerCloud, an all-in-one
e-commerce home.
The virtual middleman for online selling offers an option
for companies that struggle with technology to be visible
without having to build multiple interfaces. SellerCloud
allows a business to post products to more than 40 channel integrations with exposure through one central engine.
When an item is sold, SellerCloud allocates it to a sales order and inventory decreases across all channels. This service also includes the ability to integrate with fulfillment by
Amazon (FBA) and to sell internationally.

Sustainable, yet effective

Efficient selling is critical, but if the package doesn't arrive
in a condition that is safe, reputable and pleasing to the
consumer, the sale may not become repeatable. The
Packaging Machinery Manufacturers Institute (PMMI),

62

Reston, Va., represents packaging manufacturers that want
to ensure product is delivered safely and shelf life is extended in the right quality and presentation while protecting the
format. Until very recently, this included a strong focus on
the sustainability and environmental impact of a manufactured product supported by a range of new biomaterial options coming into the market.
Because biomaterial films can't run as quickly, the packaging line must slow down. Slower run times decrease
productivity and increase the cost of the product, leaving
manufacturers unable to optimize the materials to run at
high speeds, according to PMMI. Amid the COVID-19
outbreak, those learnings are on hold as packaging's focus
shifts from sustainability and environmental concerns to
safe packaging formats that travel well through e-commerce and the extensive handling that's required.
TC Transcontinental Packaging, Montreal, stated the
current environment makes plastic packaging more suitable than ever for its ability to increase food security and
extend product shelf life at home and in-store.
Jorge Izquierdo, vice president, market development,
PMMI, shared that product developed for brick-and-mortar will generally be touched six times. In omnichannel,
there can be as many as 15 to 20 touches depending on the
channel. Extra touches place additional strain on the durability of the packaging materials.
"When dealing with omnichannel, you typically can't
do it on your own, you need trusted partners for distribution and fulfillment, track and trace," Izquierdo said. "It's a
key consumer expectation to know where the product is at
all times and when it will be delivered. You need to know
how to communicate when partners are ready to deliver. If
there's a bottleneck, you still need to be able to fulfill the
promise to the consumer using communication, synchronization and alignment with partners."

Knowing the partners

Resulting growth in the use of centralized fulfillment
centers and contract manufacturers offer new options

PET FOOD PROCESSING | June 2020 | www.petfoodprocessing.net

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PET Food Processing - June 2020

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