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RETAILER RELATIONSHIPS

Posted 7 March 2003

SUPERMARKET SUPPLIERS in the UK Fresh Produce Supply Chain need to reconsider how they judge success according to a top industry analyst.

Martin Hingley, Principal Lecturer in Marketing and Tesco Teaching Fellow at Harper Adams University College, Shropshire, believes suppliers should evaluate success in terms of the share of network business, reductions in transaction costs and retention of business.

Speaking at the West Midlands Fresh Produce Forum, held at Pershore College, Worcestershire, on Wednesday, March 5, 2003, Mr Hingley said: “The future for UK fresh produce suppliers is bound up with that of their major retailer customers.

"Competition is between networks of retailer supply and to be successful all members of a fresh produce network need to be jointly focused on meeting the changing needs of the modern customer.

"Customers are now much more interested in convenience and prepared offerings, underpinned by excellent quality. Meeting consumer requirements should be a joint response from all parts of the fresh produce supply network working together."

Mr Hingley’s presentation, entitled ‘Supply chain relationships in the fresh produce industry,’ also considered issues relating to the industry, such as recruitment, niche and complementary opportunities for suppliers. Included in the presentation were findings from survey work on both fresh produce supply chain relationships and issues of encouraging new talent to join the industry.

In addition to representing Harper Adams and Tesco, Mr Hingley has recently been appointed the Food and Drink, Higher Education Cluster Manager for Advantage West Midlands and has a background including fresh produce and food industry research and training.

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