WASHINGTON, DC – February 20, 2015 – Out-of-stocks remain at an eight-percent average rate among food retailers and manufacturers, according to a joint study released this week at the joint industry’s Supply Chain Conference. The new report offers trading partner guidance on solving the concerns of on-shelf availability that extend well beyond lost revenue. 


Food Marketing Institute (FMI) and Grocery Manufacturers Association (GMA) commissioned the survey and resulting report as part of their trading partner alliance goals. According to the JDA Software-facilitated study entitled, Solving the Out-of-Stock Problem: A FMI-GMA Trading Partner Alliance Report, the financial bottom line is an equivalent concern to the customer experience. The report notes, “Shoppers say product availability is a top-three reason for where they shop, yet on average, every time a shopper comes into a store, one out of every 12 items on her shopping list, and one out of every 10 or less for promoted items, is not on the shelf.”


In performing the gap analysis, critical areas emerged in the study regarding metrics, processes, organizational issues and technology integration:

  • Metrics —an opportunity exists for standardized processes and measurements;
  • Processes—the report seeks to improve synchronization between retailers and manufacturers regarding event planning;
  • Organizational Issues—identifying clear accountability in order to address the problem; and
  • Technology — Standardization and integration between trading partner technologies.

The report further recommended action items to sufficiently address these gaps:

  • Move the industry toward a baseline definition of on-shelf availability in order to facilitate better communication and standardization for data exchange;
  • Seek agreement between retailers and suppliers on what data should be used for event forecasting;
  • Facilitate collaboration between retailers and suppliers in order to better align timing between issuance of event forecasts and production-scheduling requirements; and
  • Establish thresholds for on-shelf availability and contingency plans for events.

Media can request a copy of the report or visit www.fmi.org/store  or www.gmaonline.org/resources/research-tools/research-and-reports.



About GMA

Based in Washington, D.C., the Grocery Manufacturers Association is the voice of more than 300 leading food, beverage and consumer product companies that sustain and enhance the quality of life for hundreds of millions of people in the United States and around the globe. Founded in 1908, GMA is an active, vocal advocate for its member companies and a trusted source of information about the industry and the products consumers rely on and enjoy every day.  The association and its member companies are committed to meeting the needs of consumers through product innovation, responsible business practices and effective public policy solutions developed through a genuine partnership with policymakers and other stakeholders. In keeping with its founding principles, GMA helps its members produce safe products through a strong and ongoing commitment to scientific research, testing and evaluation and to providing consumers with the products, tools and information they need to achieve a healthy diet and an active lifestyle.  The food, beverage and consumer packaged goods industry in the United States generates sales of $2.1 trillion annually, employs 14 million workers and contributes $1 trillion in added value to the economy every year. www.gmaonline.org


About FMI

Food Marketing Institute proudly advocates on behalf of the food retail industry. FMI’s U.S. members operate nearly 40,000 retail food stores and 25,000 pharmacies, representing a combined annual sales volume of almost $770 billion. Through programs in public affairs, food safety, research, education and industry relations, FMI offers resources and provides valuable benefits to more than 1,225 food retail and wholesale member companies in the United States and around the world. FMI membership covers the spectrum of diverse venues where food is sold, including single owner grocery stores, large multi-store supermarket chains and mixed retail stores. For more information, visit www.fmi.org and for information regarding the FMI foundation, visit www.fmifoundation.org