Strategies You Can Take to Mitigate Supply Chain Disruptions
YOU CAN’T CONTROL EVERYTHING—BUT YOU CAN GIVE YOUR BUSINESS MORE PEACE OF MIND
The past two years have been a perfect storm for supply chain disruptions- especially in wine packaging. From pandemic lockdowns to a global energy crisis, to a major war in Europe, it’s been a challenging environment to run a business. Supply and demand were completely upended by changing buying patterns as consumers shifted from going out to ordering in—and laser-focused on their health, safety, and wellness while looking online for everything from toilet paper to treadmills. And now the world is itching to get back to normal—putting new stresses on the supply chain and the wine industry.
In a McKinsey article on future-proofing the supply chain, the authors note that “the plumbing of global commerce has rarely been a topic of much discussion in newsrooms or boardrooms, but the past two years have pushed the subject to the top of the agenda.” The nuts and bolts of running a business have never been so exposed.
None of this is news, of course, for wineries in Year 3 of global supply chain whiplash. It’s getting a little better now, but what’s next?
Smart forecasting, good planning, and a reliable packaging partner can help to mitigate future supply chain disruptions. While you can’t control everything, you can give your team peace of mind. Here are some strategies to take into consideration.
START WITH SOPHISTICATED AND SMART FORECASTING
While no one was prepared for COVID disruptions, the wineries that fared best were able to pivot their planning processes quickly to tackle the unexpected. How can you forecast effectively to mitigate your supply chain risks?
One key step: budgeting for disruptions. Having enough liquidity can help manage the price shocks of higher commodity, freight, and labor costs. It’s also important to have enough inventory in stock. Here at WinePak, we consistently focus on our global supplier partnerships, allowing us to plan ahead and keep a reliable supply of in-stock products for our customers.
Another key step to smart forecasting is to analyze your company’s risks—and recognize and address your pain points. We help our customers assess and then manage all elements of their supply chain, from raw materials to manufacturing, warehousing, and transportation. By understanding your business, we can work proactively to protect you from market fluctuations and global supply chain challenges.
HEDGE AGAINST THE UNEXPECTED
Forecasting is an important strategy when it comes to hedging against the unexpected—but it’s only one part of the puzzle of planning ahead and being prepared. All the planning in the world won’t help if you don’t have the partners and processes in place to execute when challenging times arise.
The right partner can help you manage all your sourcing and operational needs. For example:
- Supplier Diversity — Do you have suppliers who can support you when spot shortages arise? At TricorBraun WinePak, our deep network of domestic and international vendors ensures we can find our customers a wide range of quality options, from different weights and molds of glass, sustainable materials, and a large selection of closures.
- Shipping — Do you have freight partners to help you locate capacity when ocean carriers are full or driver shortages divert trucks to hot spots? We are implementing supplier and freight partner connected platforms to enable visibility across all aspects of supply chain, from factory floor to distribution door. We are also constantly negotiating the best rates for our customers.
- Warehousing — Do you have warehousing where and when you need it? At TricorBraun WinePak, we have warehouses strategically located all over the West Coast to ensure supply availability for our customers.
In addition, consider quality. At WinePak, we have a robust quality program to help our partners enhance profitability and maximize bottling ling efficiency.
ALWAYS HAVE A PLAN B
Even with all the right pieces in place, challenges can still arise- especially with glass supply. However, you can mitigate your risk by qualifying alternative vendors and materials. The more options you have upfront, the easier it is to stay ahead of these disruptions. Similarly, having a warehousing partner (and warehousing space close to you) allows you to stock inventory and can help you buffer against supply disruptions. At WinePak, we have leveraged extensive warehousing capabilities to ensure consistency during peak or disruptive periods.
Finally, supply chain disruptions may be inevitable—but how you forecast, prepare, and manage them can mean the difference between a short-term problem and a crisis that threatens the continuity of supply at your winery.
When it comes to wine packaging, we’re ready to handle all your sourcing and operational needs—even in cases of changing or unforeseen circumstances. Ask us how we can help you manage your supply chain.
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