Food Distribution / Wholesale ERP Software

Mark Canes

In today’s post, we are going to discuss typical functionality you should expect from food distribution and wholesale software. Most ERP systems are designed with a particular industry in mind. As a food distributor, be sure to find software that is designed for wholesale/distribution with the required food-related components. A proper ERP system for the food industry should contain most, if not all, of the following components:

Lot Tracking

Lot tracking is important for the food distributors because it allows them to keep track of products sold from the source to the end consumer. Lot tracking allows a distributor to discover the origin of product contamination, if it were to occur, and identify specific “lots” of product to be recalled – eliminating the need to recall all products if only certain groups were affected.

Catch Weight & Multiple Units of Measure (UOM)

Unlike most durable goods, food items are often sold using a variety of UOM. For example, product can be sold by weight, volume or in groups that contain multiple items. Your food distribution software should be able to accommodate multiple units of measure. Catch Weight accommodates inventory items that vary in weight, thereby allowing different pricing allocations for the same item depending on weight.

Flexible Customer/Contract Pricing

Contract pricing is appropriate for a variety of industries but is often well used in food distribution. Your ERP software should automatically allow for different prices customer to customer. Preferred customers may be given preferential rates, for example, and these should be easily accommodated by the software. Customer pricing allows you to set customer-specific discounts as well as discounts that come into effect when an order reaches a certain size. Contract pricing is a similar feature that will allow you to define price ranges for customers that can expire at a defined point in the future – for example, a temporary sale or promotion.

Landed Cost Tracking

Landed cost tracking allows a business to accurate record and report on all expenses tied to acquisition of items such as freight and duty. Landed cost tracking can help food distributors determine the actual cost involved in getting product to their warehouse door – not just the cost of the goods themselves. Landed cost tracking can be used to accurately track margins for effective purchasing and pricing decisions.