Supply chain “challenges” predicted for retailers

Retailers should expect supply challenges if they adapt to new consumer buying behaviours, attendees at the 2013 Oxford Farming Conference were told last week.

Speaking about food retail and supply in general, First Milk chairman Bill Mustoe said he expected to see as many changes in the supply chain in the next five years as he had seen in his 45-year career.

He explained that communication would be the most visible change and that, by the end of 2013, two billion people around the world will have made a purchase on a mobile device.

He said: “I believe that, in 2020, the supply chain will be driven by consumers. That might be on a mobile device, at home or in a store.”

According to Mustoe, the future of farmers being paid a sustainable price relies on the supply chain working and moving with the times. He said companies should adopt a “collaborative approach” in order to bring green credentials and business efficiencies.

Mustoe said: “The difference between success and failure in consumer goods in the coming decade will be the ability to adapt and change. Companies need to be set up to continually change and make regular tweaks to strategy.”


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