FMI Research: More Grocers Plan to Use Technology to Optimize Fresh Inventories

“Shrink in fresh departments is considerably higher on average, and food retailers have seen a small increase in their fresh shrink this past year,” reports the FMI in their 74th annual The Food Retailing Industry Speaks analysis.

“Technology is helping to support a range of functions for fresh foods operations. Twenty percent of responding retailers said their organizations used technology solutions in 2022 for fresh foods inventory and demand/production planning. Another 27% said they are planning to use these solutions in the future.”

When it comes to optimizing demand forecasts for fresh departments, understanding the impact of weather changes on sales, and staying a step ahead of the purchasing shifts when replenishing stores can significantly reduce perishable waste/shrink. Spoiler alert! Replenishing based on prior demand is shrinking your profit outlines how weather-driven demand analytics reduce shrink/waste costs by 10-35% by adjusting inventories at the item/store/day level ahead of times when unfavorable conditions will lead to reduced sales.

The FMI analysis reported that shrink was 5% in produce, 7.1% in bakery, 4.1% in meat, 6.1% in seafood, 9% in fresh-prepared, and 9% in deli during 2022.

When using weather-driven demand in demand forecasting technologies, grocers can minimize waste costs in fresh departments and, in doing so, make measurable gains in sustainability and carbon reduction initiatives. Learn more by reading, ‘Rubbish! Who says grocers can’t pursue sustainability objectives profitably?’