How to Sell Your Product into Gordon Food Services
Google “how to sell to Gordon Food Services” and you’ll find that submitting a product through their site is the first step. This might not be a bad option if you’re ready for a very long review and sales cycle. However, if you’re not prepared for how the company operates, there are plenty of potential pitfalls to submitting a product early as you may only have one chance.
Gordon Food Services has been around for over 120 years and has grown to become the largest family-operated business in North America committed to serving its customers in North America. Since 1897, Gordon Food Services has delivered exquisite service to its customers through carefully designed operations and food production.
Furthermore, the company has dedicated itself to impacting the communities where its branches are located. Gordon Food Services has gotten several meritorious awards to celebrate their intentional impact and service with all these intentional efforts to improve the industry and lives that they serve.
Mission And Values
The company’s forefront mission, which it has dedicated itself to over the years, is to provide customers with top quality foodservice and products. It has achieved this by creating innovative platforms and systems for its staff members and cultivated a culture of integrity and dedication. Over time, this value system has guided how the company does business. In fact, progress is measured using metrics from the cornerstone values of Gordon Food Services.
One of the foundational values with which the company is built is that the customer is king. While this does not necessarily mean the customer is always right, it means that the customer’s needs are paramount to every other. Listening and communication skills are vital skills that are required from employees of the company. From information and comments left by customers on the internet about Gordon Food services, it is evident that this culture is well appreciated.
Another such value is the philosophy of sharing. This means the glorification of teamwork. The company prides itself on sharing platforms with which members can all mutually benefit and develop their careers. Warm room mentality is another value of the company, which means that while the company thrives on fairness and relational tranquility, the goal is still put in mind. As such, plans and strategies are put in place to ensure that the company wins regardless.
Brands and Alliances
To ensure that the company can always deliver its promise to provide top quality products and services to its customers, it has formed partnerships with several independently owned companies and government organizations. These alliances and partnerships, especially those with state trade organizations, provide Gordon Food Services with government bodies representation. These partnerships also expose the company to legislative relations and ensure that it is privy to changing laws and regulations related to the industry.
Some of the privately-owned brands with which the company is partnered include Hearthstone, Mosaic Companies, Harvest Valley Fruit Juices, Kitchen Essentials, Pepper Mill, Trade East Spices and Seasoning, Brickman’s, Crown Collection, Sienna Bakery, Primo Gusto Italian Foods, and Premium Angus Beef among others.
Food Service Industry
In response to the 2020 pandemic, Gordon Food Service partnered with restaurants, food outlets, educational and healthcare facilities to alleviate the country’s food insecurity situation. This it did because, as earlier said, positively impacting the immediate community where it serves as one of the principal values of the company.
Conclusively, to ensure that the staff members of Gordon Food Services are up-to-date with the relevant skills necessary for the industry, it periodically organizes quarterly skill acquisition and career development programs.
Working with Foodservice Distributors
Every year, more people eat outside of their homes. This trend has led to a rising potential for food , beverage and seafood businesses to become foodservice industry suppliers. Restaurants, hotels, hospitals, retirement communities, nursing homes, military bases, prisons and leisure facilities are included in the foodservice sector and are often referred to as the HRI Trade (Hospitality, Restaurants and Institutions). Foodservice operators are aggressively pursuing a diverse supply of food and beverage goods and there is a rising appetite for local and unique food selections.
Many foodservice distributors can trace their roots back to the mid-1800s when they started as family owned companies. The trend has continued in the industry as new foodservice distributors have entered the market and some of the original companies have maintained their independent / family owned status.
There are different requirements for the foodservice trade than for grocery retail, especially with respect to packaging and labeling. Pack sizes are usually larger and labels that appeal to customers are not needed. In “me-too” items, foodservice operators have no interest. Your product needs to be distinguished from the competition. There are many ways of identifying a product; only a few concepts are packaging, convenience and a business tale. For example, there are many honey products on the market; by using more compact packaging, innovative recipes and sharing the unique story of how the business started, a new honey may be distinguished from the competition.
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Find a Foodservice
The food industry firm, Technomics, estimated that approximately 225 million meals are eaten away from home each day in the United States. This includes both restaurant and non-commercial eating places. Americans can be very busy and at the same time social. Many Americans prefer to have at least one meal outside every day. It could be the lunch during work, or the breakfast at a restaurant opposite the office, or a late dinner with a friend at a nice place; it is a dominant culture in the country.
However, we know the names of these restaurants, we may know the popular chefs but the people who deliver food products the restaurants prepare are hardly known by us because they are always behind the scenes. These people are known as foodservice distributors.
A foodservice distributor works as an intermediary between manufacturers of food products and the foodservice operator. This could be a chef, foodservice director, food and beverage manager, and independent food preparation businesses operator owners. The foodservice distributor procures, stores, sells, and makes deliveries of food products, providing foodservice operators with access to items from a wide variety of manufacturers. Foodservice distributors purchase pallets and bulk inventory quantities that are broken down to case and sometimes unit quantities for the foodservice operator. Most foodservice operators purchase from a range of local, specialty, and broadline foodservice distributors on a regular basis which could be daily or weekly basis.
It would have been very difficult for restaurants to meet the nutritional needs of about 65% – 70% of Americans who eat outside every day if not for the job of foodservice distributors in the line. There are a lot of things to be concerned with in the running of a restaurant and it would be an enormous burden if restaurants go to manufacturers of food products to keep getting supplies which could be as frequent as daily or weekly. Someone has to be in the line meeting demands and getting the products across to the restaurants.
It should be clarified at this point that foodservice distributors don’t only distribute to restaurants, they also get food products to cafeterias, industrial caterers, and hospital and nursing homes.
Estimates by the International Foodservice Distributors Association reveal that foodservice distributors in the Unites States, as a daily average, deliver approximately 27 million cases of food and other products.
There are several foodservice companies and they may very well range in size from a one-truck operation to larger corporations. There are broadline foodservice distributor offers a wide array of products, while a system distributor stocks a narrow array of products for specific customers, such as restaurant chains. A broadline distributor may carry up to 15,000 different items for purchase and operate topnotch warehouse and transportation operations.
The average American who eats out has the cause to be grateful to foodservice distributors. The industry sector is projected to grow as more eating places are looking at offering their customers more varieties.
Top 10 Foodservice Distributors
- Cheney Brothers
- Sysco Corp.
- US Foods
- McLane Foodservice
- Performance Foodservice
- Cooper-Booth Wholesale Co.
- Gordon Food Service
- DOT Foods
- Reinhart Foodservice
- The Martin-Brower Co.
- Porky Products
- Ben E. Keith Co.
- Shamrock Foods Co.
- KeHE Distributors
- Food Services of America
- Vistar Transportation
- Golden State Foods
- Lipari Foods
- Buffalo Rock Co.
- Merchants Foodservice
- Blue Line Foodservice Distribution
- Labatt Food Service
- Systems Services of America
- DPI Specialty Foods
- Coastal Pacific Food Distributors
- Dutch Valley Foods
- Vendors Supply Inc.
- Orion Food System
- Jake’s Finer Foods