Issue link: http://magazine.progressivegrocer.com/i/689994
23 SOLUTIONS JUNE 2016 A hot bar, a salad bar and a few tables for dine-in customers are no longer enough for a successful supermarket grocerant, say indus- try experts. Grocerants need to be more creative and quality-focused to capture the attention of busy customers, and given rising mini- mum wage rates, foodservice op- erations should be more efcient, industry analysts emphasize. "Grocerants should adopt best practices that are taking hold in other sectors," says William Rosenzweig, dean and executive director of the Culinary Institute of Amer- ica's Food Business School. "For example, one potential area for improvement would be to use tools to track and monitor the fow of purchasing, so that grocerants can better manage their inventory of prepared food items. "Customers want to see that the food they're buying is fresh—that it hasn't been sitting out all day," he says. Grocerants can also do a better job of cross-merchandis- ing between the prepared food and produce departments, Rosenzweig contends. "One of the things grocerants—as opposed to restaurants—have going for them that I haven't seen leveraged successfully is the opportunity to showcase all of this fresh food in the store," he says. For instance, signage by fresh artichokes in the produce aisle could tell customers about a prepared food dish featuring artichokes in the grocerant section and vice versa, and recipes could be displayed in both departments. In addition, Rosenzweig suggests improving coordina- tion between the meat, produce and dairy departments and the grocerant department, so that products close to their sell-by dates are incorporated into prepared meals, lessening food waste overall. Meals made to order To add pizzazz to and improve the freshness of their prepared food oferings, retailers should blaze trails on the new grocerant frontier of made-to-order meals and snacks, says Juan Martinez, founder and principal of "Grocerants have...the opportunity to show- case all of this fresh food in the store." — William Rosenzweig, CIA's Food Business School business models Better BY C A RO LY N S CH I ER H O R N Boost efficiency, transparency by adopting new best practices.