Intense Dairy Demand Leads to Dedicated Supply Chain Practice Group

Prescient creates Dairy Supply Chain Practice Group dedicated to unique challenges of the dairy industry

Prescient creates Dairy Supply Chain Practice Group dedicated to unique challenges of the dairy industry

West Chester, PA — July 27, 2006 — Whether it's milk for the kids' breakfast, yogurt to help trim that waistline or ice cream to satisfy a sweet tooth, dairy products are a staple of the American family.

Now Prescient, a provider of supply chain and advanced commerce solutions for retailers and suppliers, is forming the Dairy Supply Chain Practice Group to focus on dairy's unique manufacturing and distribution challenges.

"After consulting with our clients in the dairy industry on a day-to-day basis we realized they face a very specific set of demands. Issues such as short shelf-life, quick turns, changing consumer preferences, regional preferences, seasonality and product safety really set them apart," explained Karen Sickles, Prescient's director of sales operations and product management. "Prescient decided to unite this group to help dairy suppliers find innovative ways to overcome those challenges without sacrificing quality and safety."

Prescient's Dairy Practice Group, which will be headed by Sickles, will provide dairy industry suppliers with a forum to share best practices and exchange ideas. The group is expected to focus on several distribution issues substantially impacting the dairy industry today, most specifically the use of scan sales data for lowering out-of-stocks, demand-replenishing planning, reducing shrink, managing inventory, maintaining high service levels and scan-based trading.

"We are excited to be a part of this timely industry group," said Scott Gift, regional sales coordinator of Smith Dairy, one of the largest family-owned dairies in the country. "Dairy is a category that sets the traffic pattern at most grocers. In fact, milk has become a staple of the American family. When consumers go to the store they expect to find it on the shelf. This practice group is going to help us use the most innovative practices to keep the shelves stocked and our customers happy."

Milk and dairy products are at the top of consumers' grocery lists. Earlier this year, Prescient commissioned a survey of Beeline Products — items consumers rush to replenish the moment they run out. Milk was No. 1 (winning by a more than 100 percent margin).

"Our Beeline Products survey reiterated how important the dairy industry is to consumers," said Sickles. "Now we have a group of thought leaders who are in a position to really make a difference in the industry and blaze a new trail of innovation, quality and safety."

Each year, the Prescient Dairy Practice Group will hold a member meeting at Prescient's Annual Client Exchange (PACE) in Philadelphia. The conference will also feature a dedicated dairy track. In addition to the members-only meeting, quarterly conference calls will be held throughout the year.

Additional Articles of Interest
  • What are the skill sets that will catapult your supply management group to its peak performance? For a guide to help unlock their potential, read "Building a Better Supply Chain Professional" in the April/May 2006 issue of Supply & Demand Chain Executive.