While it may only be the first day of November, holiday season planning should be well underway! Every year the holiday season builds with anticipation and before we know it, the holiday season is in full swing. Celebrations are everywhere you look and people are hunting down gifts for friends and family.
With all the festivities, there is undoubtedly work going on behind the scenes to make this magical time of year happen. That work is often from the businesses who are supplying the gifts, the drinks, and the food – the retail stores, the suppliers and the manufacturers. Holiday seasons have a substantial effect on food manufacturing and vice versa. As the holiday season nears, let’s have a look at how food manufacturing changes shape to prepare for this time of year.
Sugar, spice and everything nice
Holidays create memories and memories are often evoked by our senses. The smell of a honey baked ham or the taste of our favourite Christmas dessert. The food manufacturing industry is working hard to help you sculpt these memories. Seasonal flavours will emerge, with peppermint products infiltrated into chocolates, ice creams and candy canes. This is an example of a flavour trend during the holidays that has been identified by food manufacturers. To meet demand for this flavour, production is scaled up to produce peppermint flavoured products for this time of year. It’s not necessary to stock these products year-round, as this limited-time flavour peaks with demand during the holidays. Additionally, because it is restricted to the holidays, this strategic marketing tactic can drive and increase sales simply by only releasing something seasonally.
Managing the holiday season with efficient food manufacturing software
To account for the change in food production during the holiday season, it’s important to have food manufacturing software to manage these changes. Since a food manufacturer may only incorporate peppermint for three months out of the year, they need to anticipate their manufacturing needs to meet demand, but not over-produce. Food manufacturing software can track data from previous year’s peppermint usage and consumption to help plan for the year to come.
If manufacturers are wanting to add new holiday flavours or types of food to their product lines, it is necessary to test the feasibility of production through their supply chain. Sometimes, despite there being a demand for a unique holiday flavour, there could be challenges acquiring enough of that ingredient or organising the process and distribution of that mass production. Unfortunately, food manufacturers may not be able to produce it if it seems unrealistic.
Food manufacturing software can assist in these decisions by identifying inventory stock with suppliers and using the interconnected resources of the supply chain within the software. The food manufacturing software can help foster relationships within a company and with different members of the supply chain as well. That way, when the holiday season is imminent and the food manufacturers have different requests, there is a strong platform to channel these requests. They can use it to communicate effectively, reduce lead times and work towards creating the most optimum and delicious food products for the season.
Article by Melanie Chan in collaboration with our team of Unleashed Software inventory and business specialists. Melanie has been writing about inventory management for the past three years. When not writing about inventory management, you can find her eating her way through Auckland.