The U.S. Dairy Exporter Blog: Market Analysis, Research & News
  • Focus on Customers to Improve Your Dairy Export Supply Chain

    By Ross Christieson February 11, 2016

    In a tough global market, managing your dairy supply chain to meet the needs of customers is a proven, winning strategy. 

    Editor’s Note: This is the second post of a three-part series providing strategies to maximize your dairy export supply chain. Read part one of the series.

    When global dairy markets are tough, as they are now, you have to up your game. A good place to start is your dairy export supply chain. 

    Cargo20_1-272012-edited-359969-editedAs discussed in part one of our series, the export supply chain is a complex sequence of events, critical to a company's customer satisfaction and bottom-line profits. 

    A benchmark study by PwC found that the most successful companies across several industries have supply chains that are fast, flexible and responsive to meeting customer needs.

    The PwC survey looked at supply chain management in automotive, chemicals and process, industrial products, pharmaceuticals and life sciences, retail and consumer goods, technology and telecom.

    Lessons learned from other industries

    This chart shows what drives supply chain management in other industries. 


    The study showed that industry "leaders" optimize the supply chain through perfect order delivery, cost reduction and investment in supply chain networks to maximize flexibility and responsiveness to customers. They simplify their processes wherever possible.

    Get more: Visit the home page

    In dairy, the Dutch have found the key

    Among global dairy competitors, the Dutch have developed a reputation for operational efficiency made more efficient by regular information sharing with customers. Developing close relationships with key customers allows the Dutch dairy industry to gain visibility of consumption patterns and is beneficial to production planning and managing stock levels.

    The more information an exporting company can gain in the process, the better it can serve its customers, and affect the bottom line.

    Graham Illingworth, vice president of sales for Southeast Asia, Hellmann Worldwide Logistics, points out that the customer is the most important part of the export supply chain "because without the customer, there is no supply chain."


    If customers are happy, they will keep coming back for more. That will boost revenue and resolve any headaches the company may experience with logistics. 

    Marc Beck, executive vice president of strategy and insights at USDEC, sums it up nicely: “Configuring the supply chain to meet the needs of individual customers is a winning formula.” 


    Our three-part series on export supply chain management consists of:

    Related articles have appeared in the U.S. Dairy Exporter Blog:

    The U.S. Dairy Export Council fosters collaborative industry partnerships with processors, trading companies and others to enhance global demand for U.S. dairy products and ingredients. USDEC is primarily supported by Dairy Management Inc. through the dairy farmer checkoff. How to republish this post.    

    Market Access Global Marketing Research & Data
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