The Grocery Manufacturers Association (GMA) and the Food Marketing Institute (FMI) today announced the 2006 Unsaleables Innovation Award winners, exemplary companies who worked across industries to reduce the incidence of unsaleables. Two pairs of companies – H-E-B and Carolina Supply Chain Services (CSCS), a cls company, and Heinz U.S. Consumer Products and GENCO Damage Research – garnered recognition this year.

"We congratulate all four companies on their achievement, and hope their experience and learnings will continue to benefit them and the entire CPG industry," FMI Senior Director of Industry Relations Patrick Walsh said. "The award winners recognized that the most successful unsaleables management practices analyze performance across divisions and take accountability for inefficiencies. Minimizing unsaleables in the supply chain remains a shared process, which is why we value the outcomes celebrated through this award."

H-E-B and CSCS implemented programs that changed the processes, procedures, private label packaging and policy that were detrimental to the supply chain, ultimately reducing unsaleables by 50 percent as a percentage of sales. H-E-B tracked the reductions in unsaleables across multiple divisions and found some performed better than others.

Similarly, Heinz worked with GENCO to identify root causes of unsaleables, instituting an aggressive goal to reduce them by 40 percent. In the first year, Heinz trimmed unsaleables by 23 percent and projected an additional 25 percent reduction to meet their goal in just two years. "Project MUDA," or "waste" in Japanese, is a multi-dimensional operation that impacts all Heinz projects.

"GMA and FMI have consistently supported and promoted industry work that recognizes effective supply chain processes," Karin Croft, senior director of industry affairs at GMA, said. "H-E-B and Heinz saw initial cost benefits, but the most significant impact was adopting missions to eliminate unsaleables in their corporate strategies."

GMA and FMI announced the Innovation Award winners at the Joint Industry Unsaleables Management Conference, an event dedicated to finding solutions to unsaleables in the supply chain.

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The Grocery Manufacturers Association (GMA) represents the world’s leading branded food, beverage and consumer products companies. Since 1908, GMA has been an advocate for its members on public policy issues and has championed initiatives to increase industrywide productivity and growth. GMA member companies employ more than 2.5 million workers in all 50 states and account for more than $680 billion in sales. The association is led by a board of member company chief executives. For more information, visit the GMA Web site at

The Food Marketing Institute ( conducts programs in research, education, industry relations and public affairs on behalf of its 1,500 member companies — food retailers and wholesalers — in the United States and around the world. FMI’s U.S. members operate approximately 26,000 retail food stores with a combined annual sales volume of $340 billion — three-quarters of the nation’s food retail sales. FMI’s retail membership is composed of large multi-store chains, regional firms and independent supermarkets. Its international members include 200 companies from 50 countries.