What To Ask To Your Food Distributor

A male food distributor having a word with female shopkeeper

You’ve done detailed research on wholesale food distributors and now it’s time to meet with some of them. In order to ensure the right fit for your business, there are certain questions you should ask.

Product quality is always a priority, but other factors are critical in order to ensure smooth operations. Reliable delivery, a variety of products, price, and integrity of service play equally important roles.

If you’re looking for food distributors in Virginia, North Carolina, and South Carolina, Atlantic Dominion has a stellar reputation in the industry.

Questions to Ask Food Distribution Companies:

How Long Have You Been in Business?

Experience is always a plus. It will be easier to hit the ground running if you work with a partner with proven success in distributing your type of product.

What is Your Business Model?

Learn as much as you can about the business models of the companies you’re considering. Do they have the right infrastructure to connect your products to the right customers?.

Other questions could include:

  • Does my product line fit into your existing portfolio of products?
  • Do you have strong relationships with your customers?
  • Do you stay up-to-date on industry trends?
  • Can you provide furnish profit/loss statements for the past three years?

What Are Your Minimum and Maximum Order Quantities?

Order minimums and maximums can have a big impact on your inventory. A wholesale food distributor’s delivery requirements must work with your needs, so you always have enough product to keep up with customer demand. A minimum might leave you short, while a maximum might leave you with overstock. The goal is to achieve the perfect balance.

When discussing quantities, also ask how the distributor handles issues such as shortages and account credits. This will let you know exactly what you can expect in terms of support.

I’m Interested In Carrying ____, What Do You Recommend?

Once you’re ready to start selling more products, if you need some advice, don’t hesitate to ask your wholesaler. An experienced distributor like Atlantic Dominion, can give you information about the most popular products in your industry and help find the items that suit your business needs.

Can You Accommodate My Delivery Schedule?

Rather than beginning by asking distributors about their schedules, describe your ideal delivery calendar. A good food distributor (like Atlantic Dominion) guarantees that you’ll receive the products you need exactly when you need them.

To determine if the distributor can meet your expectations, ask questions like:

  • Do you deliver on weekends and holidays?
  • Can you guarantee a specific delivery timeframe?
  • Will you deliver items directly to my cooler and freezer, or will I need staff to help unload the truck?
  • Are you able to drop products off even when my business is closed?

How Do You Approach Pricing?

Find out if the distributor provides volume discounts, and if they offer a reduced price for fewer deliveries throughout the week. You might be able to negotiate for better pricing if you can be flexible with your delivery times or days.

Good wholesale food distributors get your product into the hands of customers. The benefits can extend beyond this if you approach your relationship with wholesale food distributors in terms of a true partnership. This can pave the way for growth, increased market share, loyal customers, and, of course, profits.

At Atlantic Dominion, we’re happy to answer these questions as well as any others you might have. We’ve been a trusted supplier to convenience and retail stores since 1875. A big part of our success has to do with the personalized customer service we offer. You can see all of our affiliations here.

Contact us today! We look forward to working with you.