Convenience Store News - July 2018 - 24
OUT & ABOUT
Laying Out a Path to Future Success
The health of the foodservice industry depends on developing
true leaders and embracing the evolution of technology,
according to the 2018 IDDBA Show By Angela Hanson
THE FOODSERVICE INDUSTRY IS CHANGING,
and those who refuse to change with it will
be left behind, Erik Waterkotte said at the
opening session of the 2018 International
Dairy Deli Bakery Association (IDDBA)
Show. However, that doesn't mean the
industry as we know it is doomed. Ultimately, the core business stays the same:
selling things that customers need, want
Waterkotte, who serves as the 2017-2018
chairman of the board of IDDBA and is
senior director of sales at Hayward, Calif.based Columbus Craft Meats, projected
both caution and optimism as he kicked
off the annual event, held June 10-12 in
like giving discounts to Amazon Prime members.
"The synergy of brick-and-mortar and ecommerce will
fill customer needs in ways we haven't dreamt," Waterkotte predicted.
Echoing the need to look ahead, Albertsons President and
Chief Operating Officer Jim Donald discussed his vision
of the future during the show's first general session and
an afternoon presentation entitled "The Future of Fresh."
"The way we used to merchandise is gone and it's not coming back," Donald said, discussing how the center of store is
no longer the center of attention.
In the future, Donald expects that: the majority of customer
interactions will be managed through technology; scanand-go technology will be in place; robots will perform
tasks such as refilling shelves and unloading trucks; and the
death of malls and big-box stores is overblown, but these
spaces will be strongly oriented to fresh by 2023.
At the same time, even with the rise of technology, "leadership skills will be required even more," he noted.
To be successful, Donald believes leaders must be at ease
with handling commerce, investors, face-to-face interactions and people smarter than themselves. And, he said,
they must surround themselves with "a team of rivals - not
a team of people saying 'yes, let's do this.'"
During the show's second general session, Mike Eardley,
IDDBA president and CEO, stressed the importance of
transparency as a key component of future success.
"Transparency in the food industry is a must today," Eardley said during his presentation, which was titled "Growing
the Future: What's in Store."
The IDDBA 18 show, hosted by the International Dairy Deli Bakery
Association, drew 10,576 attendees and 891 exhibiting companies.
"We're seeing things accelerate," he said,
reflecting on changes he says stem from
advances in technology and are having
major ramifications on retail foodservice.
He noted that "omnichannel is standard
operating procedure," citing Amazon's
exploration into cashierless stores with
Amazon Go, and how Amazon is utilizing its
purchase of Whole Foods through things
24 Convenience Store News C S N E W S . c o m
It is unequivocally true that shoppers care where their food
comes from, he said. They want to know what the ingredients are and where they were sourced. Consumers want to
know the story behind their food, and have proof of it.
"Transparency and storytelling go hand-in-hand," Eardley
said. "Transparency equals trust."
He advised companies to adopt consumer-focused strategies that give consumers the "why" - why to shop at a
certain store, why they want a certain product, etc.
"They help us learn how to increase our business and create
loyal customers," he said. CSN