5 Reasons Your Supermarket Needs a Fresh Operating System


For too long, store teams in supermarket fresh departments have had to rely on perpetual inventory and demand planning solutions that can’t handle the complexities of fresh categories. Department managers know that a box of cereal can’t be treated the same as a box of blueberries, but the technology they have to use doesn’t. A lack of fresh-first tech leads to inaccurate inventory and forecasting, time-consuming and frustrating daily tasks, and inconsistent product quality and in-stock rates. Systems built for center store simply don't work for perishables and grocers that lack the right solution struggle to have truly competitive fresh departments.

Luckily, there’s a solution! Fresh Operating Systems drive transformation in grocery store fresh departments by taking a fresh-focused approach and unifying previously disjointed processes from forecasting and inventory to store operations. Here are a few reasons supermarkets need a Fresh Operating System:

  1. Reduced shrink that doesn’t result in higher stockouts
    Over-ordering to ensure shelves stay stocked isn’t efficient or cost-effective. Excess product leads to heavy backrooms, exponential waste, and lower-quality produce for customers.
  2. Streamlined ordering system built for fresh-specific variables and tasks
    Eliminate guesswork and fragmented processes with a platform that’s built for perishables, including bulk, non-UPC’d, and seasonal products. The Afresh app uses familiar workflows that store teams pick up quickly and adhere to at a rate of 97%.
  3. Recommendations that store teams can trust
    Fresh-first systems help individual stores stock what customers buy, taking into account sales, seasonality, display sizes, and unique circumstances. Afresh combines store-level data, real-time intelligence from produce managers, and a count-based approach that gives teams the data they need to make smart ordering decisions and become experts in fresh.
  4. Store-level visibility that provides chainwide insights and improvements
    Data and reports specific to fresh department performance help executives, produce buyers, and store managers build strategies that drive improvements across the entire chain and help stores meet the growing demand for fresh.
  5. Progress toward sustainability goals that impacts every community each store serves
    Fresh is the future but because systems in place lack the flexibility needed for perishables, U.S. grocery retailers throw away about 30% of food every year. This impacts the planet in multiple ways, contributing to greenhouse gas emissions, wasting resources used to grow and transport the items, and filling landfills with food that could have been enjoyed.

Get the Fresh Operating System Playbook here.

For decades, supermarkets have been building more prominent fresh departments without adding technology that’s attuned to the unique challenges of perishable food. Afresh has built the first-ever Fresh Operating System - created from the ground up to streamline ordering, forecasting, replenishment, and store operations for grocery store fresh departments. Using artificial intelligence, machine learning, and input from store teams, Afresh provides confident ordering recommendations. As a result, stores keep shelves stocked, reduce shrink, and sell more fresh. 

With fresh-first technology in every store, grocers gain a competitive edge that turns fresh departments into a destination that drives customer retention. Request a demo today.

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