As the present day scenario suggests, all the business organizations have to keep in mind several factors for their successful business expansion. The most important aspects that any and every business organization must take into consideration are the customer satisfaction. This era is the era of rapid development and advancement. The customers now are looking forward to not only the quality and the quantity of the goods and services, but also to several other additional stuffs. The most important among them is the customer service. The companies for this reason have to keep a sound logistics and supply chain management. They need to maintain this logistic and supply chain management chain right from the suppliers to the final customers. It usually involves a long and complex network of activities like warehousing, inventory, planning and scheduling, customer service and many others. One of the most complicated food sectors is the ice cream industry, since it needs several additional facilities like cold temperature, special kind of packaging and refrigerated carriers etc (Pang et al .,2015). One of the major challenges that the supply and logistics section of the ice cream industry face in today’s scenario is the maintenance of proper temperature. This is because the ice cream is such a product that needs to be stored at proper temperatures right from the beginning to the end of the supply chain. In other words, the company has to pay much attention towards the temperature control and handling in the SCM
The first and important thing that the company must do is to make a proper plan. A sound business plan must contain detailed information about each and every operation details. It has to take many decisions based on customer choices like what to produce, and for whom to produce.
The company also has to decide the sources that are the suppliers. Once the sources of the raw materials are decided the company must go for negotiations and scheduling deliveries. The performance can be measured via the performance of the employees like timely delivery of raw materials, settlement of payment, quality of the raw materials etc.
This is the part where the companies have to look after almost all the important aspects like testing of the raw materials, storing of data, regulatory compliance etc. It can be measured by seeing the overall performance of the company and the market share that the company has in the industry.
This includes the selection of the transportation and the distribution options. In other words, the Companies must see to it that the deliveries reach the customers within the stipulated time period. The performance can be measured from the customer feedback that is whether or not the customers are satisfied with the services, and also the quality of the final products after it reaches them.
The functioning of the com pay does not end only with the delivery of products to the customers, but the company also has to see to the other factors, like managing the defective returned goods, identifying the defects, sending them for recycling. This can be measured by the records of inventory product, the amount of product returns, t he management of the defective products etc.
Earlier the company used to follow several aspects of the supply chain and logistics functions like transport, controlling of the inventory, handling of the material and also warehousing. However, it has been seen that the needs and demands of the customers are changing day by day. In order to cater to the needs and demands of the customers, the company has to modify and upgrade their supply chain management in several ways (Stadtler, 2015). The main motif of the company is to see that how they can gather and bring g all the different activities of the supply chain management into a single, balanced and well co ordinate supply chain.
As far as the integration is concerned, it is mainly divided in to two different parts; they are the internal and the external integration.
The internal integration of tip top ice creams
The tip top ice cream has to import several raw materials for its production like-
Fats, sugar, emulsifiers, stabilizers, flavors, milk powder, milk cream and several other such input products.
As far as the marketing of the tip top ice creams products is concerned, it has a good local and global demand as well. It is one of the chief producer and distributor of dairy products and ice creams in different parts of New Zealand. The universal supply chain stretches its marketing and distribution over all the firms in New Zealand. They also have several clients and patrons located in several parts of the world. Tip top has been making delicious ice creams and operating in New Zealand for over seventy five years. As the tip top company mainly deals in ice cream and dairy products, it has to take very much care of the fact that, the temperature is well maintained in every stage of their logistics and supply chain (Govindan et al .,2014). In order to see that there is no compromise with the quality of the ice cream, the tip top company maintains a particular kind of supply chain called the cold supply chain. They have to take very much care of the fact that there is no heat, rather no unwanted risk of temperature created while the ice creams are being taken from one place to the other. The delivery truck that is to be used must be heat proof and designed accordingly, so as to see that the ice creams do not melt and stay intact (Juan Ding et al .,2014).
The integration can however take place only after the combination of the two that is the material management as well as the physical distribution. In other words both the inward as well as the outward flow of products must take place in a proper manner so that the whole process runs smoothly. Right from the starting point, that is from the point of acquiring the raw materials from the suppliers, transporting the raw materials from the place of origin to the different production units. Food industry in general needs to pay special attention to this aspect, so that there are no issues with the quality of food. There are mainly several different stages that the food industry needs to follow in order to upgrade and integrate its supply chain. In order to integrate the supply chain, the industry must question its existing supply chain in the first instance. After thorough questioning and analyzing session, it was seen that there are some or the other loopholes existing in the supply chain and logistics that they were using. Currently, there are three trends that will enable a much increased level of integration in the supply chain process. The first is the pending food safety legislation. This legislation needs that there must be time limitations I posed and maintained. This time limitation must be on the product tracing. Apart from this, the food chains are something that always is very diverse in nature and requires the participation of several kinds of entities at different points of tome. This is because in the food industry, there is often a huge diversity in terms of geography, size, locations, resource, experience etc.
In the modern day scenario, it is highly essential for each and every industry to maintain the e commerce facilities. In other words, the companies must try and use the internet based facilities in order to manage and operate the logistics and the supply chain in a better way. The must make use of different software (Eksoz, Mansouri & Bourlakis 2014). The company and try and seek for measures of using the technology and the modern scientific methods to control the power cuts. As the tip top ice cream company has realized that the major problem it faces, is that of power cuts. Among all the other food products, ice cream is the one that is extra sensitive to temperature. Thus, frequent power cuts will greatly harm the quality of the ice creams (Beske, Land & Seuring 2014). As a result of this problem, the company has decided to use the special power back up methods. Apart from this, they might also consider using dry ice. Adding dry ice to the packages or in the trucks will help the ice creams stay intact without any damage being done to the quality of the ice cream (van Elzakker et al .,2014). Among all the other general food products, ice cream is one that needs special temperature control methods right from the time of its procurement, through the entire process of transportation, manufacturing, packaging and finally followed by the last step that is delivering them to the customers. It must also be noted, while upgrading the supply chain and logistics, that ice creams are exclusively seasonal products and there are some additional up gradations and adjustments that are to be made in the supply chain management and logistics of such products. One of the most important steps that can be adopted by the Tip Top ice cream company is developing resilient supply chain. In other words, this supply chain must be able to build the flexibility in the entire process and also for changing the prevalent corporate culture (Acar et al., 2017).
This can be done by increasing the number of suppliers from whom the company purchases its raw materials. This will increase the number of alternative options at the hands of the company. It can so happen that during the business transactions, there are several unwanted disputes that arise. However, the production must not get hampered in any way. It is hence, beneficial for maintaining a large number of suppliers from whom the company can get the required amount of raw materials from them. This will also enable the tip top ice cream company to hold some excess amount of food inventory (Beg et al .,2017).
Adapting to climatic change and building resilience
Apart from this, another strategy that the tip top ice cream company can use is combining the procurement strategy with supplier relationship (Manzin & Accorsi 2013). Maintaining a good and healthy relationship with the suppliers is indeed useful. It will act as a very good in built strategy for the company. Apart from thus, the tip top ice cream company may also consider shifting the entire supply chain from one specific geographical location to the other. As the food products in general and the ice cream in particular are very climate sensitive items, the company’s manufacturing them have to be very much concerned about this factor. As the geographical location of the company is subjected to several extremes of climatic conditions, they might consider shifting the hub of their supply chain away to some other place that has favorable climatic conditions.
Keeping in mind the contemporary issues that are faced by the logistics and supply chain of the food companies, one of the most essential step that is to be taken by the company is sharing the relevant information of the supply chain systems with their consumers. This can turn out to be an important step, as it will help in minimizing the risk of consumer vulnerability. The consumers also must be trained about the harmful impacts of food wastage (Allata, Valero, & Benhadja 2017).
As the tip top ice cream company mainly deals in the ice cream and the dairy products, they must make use of the proper refrigerating facilities. The increasing availability of technologies cab greatly is used to enhance the logistics of the company. This will enable to control and monitor the risk areas to which the company is exposed to (Acar et al., 2017).
This is one of the most essential aspects of the smart integration of the supply and logistics system of the food industry. This is highly useful in order to check and manage the food inventory of food and also the wastage of food that often can disrupt the production of the company.
Three of the most essential and significant value creation stages are-
- The first important thing that the company needs to do is to understand the demand of their customers. In other words, they need to understand what the driving forces are for their customers. The company has to understand and provide their customers with things that are actually important to them. Tip Top ice creams must understand the exact demand of their customers. They need to know the exact flavors that the customers are looking for or any additional benefits that the customers want.
- Market segmentation is also very much crucial here. Ice cream is something that has a huge demand for children, young adults but not that much for the old generation of people. Hence the company must de3sign their product in such a way so that it becomes much more attractive to that particular segment of targeted customers. Apart from this, they might also consider setting up a new branch at a particular geographical location that is easily accessible by the targeted group of customers (Grimm, Hofstetter & Sarkis 2014).
- In proper to create value, the company will surely have to make some investments. However, this must be kept in mind that all these investments must be made in the right place that is for the right customers that will provide the right value in return. Sales promotion, product up gradations, R&D everything must be done in order to suit the tastes of the targeted customers (Aung & Chang 2014).
Thereby, it can be concluded from this paper that in proper to expand the business properly, the Tip Top ice cream company has to analyze and understand the customer demands. It is only after that they will be able to make modifications and up gradations in their supply chain and logistics. It is also necessary for them to integrate the supply chain and logistics system from time to time; keeping in mind the changing consumer needs and demands.
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