A Conversation with Tim Skaryd of Hospitality Sales and Marketing
Navigating the world of Co-packing can feel overwhelming. There are many things to consider when deciding who to co-pack your products. We sat down with Tim Skaryd, the President of Hospitality Sales and Marketing, Ohio’s largest food co-packing consultation firm. With over 25 years of experience in the food industry, Tim has worked in restaurants, manufacturing, and sales. He has assisted numerous clients in various sectors, from restaurants to food brands, helping them with product manufacturing and development. Tim’s expertise extends to marketing, price strategies, and FDA regulations. He has recently introduced local food programs for Target and Kroger and a healthier and more cost-effective breakfast and lunch program for a group of charter schools. We’re thrilled to have Tim join us today as we delve into the five most common mistakes in co-packing. Thank you, Tim, for sharing your valuable insights with us.
Let’s jump right in! When selecting a co-packer, the first important step is understanding what they do and the expectations involved. A co-packer essentially serves as the manufacturer for your company. They take your recipe and create your product according to your specifications. By partnering with a co-packer, you can focus on sales and distribution rather than spending all your time in the kitchen.
Tim emphasizes that it’s crucial to remember your goal is making money, not just manufacturing products. He suggests avoiding solely focusing on production without considering long-term profitability. Now, let’s move on to the first mistake.
Mistake #1: Choosing A Co-Packer Solely Based On Their Ability Rather Than Their Specialization
Tim advises against selecting a co-packer simply because they can produce your product. Instead, finding a co-packer specializing in your product category, such as pasta sauce, is crucial. Co-packers specializing in a particular category will likely be more efficient and cost-effective due to their expertise and economies of scale. Working with a specialized co-packer increases your chances of success in the market.
Mistake #2: Overlooking The Importance Of Using The Same Brands, Packaging, And Specifications
Maintaining consistency is critical when transitioning to co-packing. It’s essential to ensure that your co-packer uses the same brands, packaging materials, and product specifications that you have been using. This consistency helps maintain the quality and integrity of your product, which is crucial for your customers who appreciate your brand’s unique features.
Mistake #3: Not Considering The Minimum Production Run Requirements Of The Co-Packer
Every co-packer has a minimum production run requirement based on their equipment and processes. While a higher minimum might seem intimidating, Tim suggests considering the cost per unit. Working with a co-packer could lower your costs and make your product more competitive in pricing. It is essential to evaluate whether you can sell the minimum units required and determine if it aligns with your business goals.
Mistake #4: Neglecting To Evaluate The Co-Packers Capabilities And Automation Level
Tim emphasizes the significance of assessing a co-packers automation level. Understanding whether they have semi-automatic or fully automated production lines is crucial. Ideally, working with a co-packer that specializes in your product category and has automated processes can lead to higher efficiency, shorter production times, and cost savings.
Mistake #5: Failing To Communicate And Ask The Right Questions During The Co-Packer Selection Process
When evaluating potential co-packers, engaging in a two-way conversation is essential. Tim recommends asking questions about the co-packers capabilities, equipment, and ingredient sourcing. Understanding their limitations and discussing your specific requirements will help determine if the co-packer is the right fit for your business.
Avoiding these five common mistakes in co-packing is like having a secret recipe for success. By staying mindful of the importance of clear communication, conducting thorough research, establishing solid partnerships, keeping an eye on quality control, and staying on top of logistics, you’re already miles ahead of the competition. And hey, if you’re a CPG brand needing some extra help or guidance, just give us a shout! We’re here to lend a hand and make your co-packing journey smooth.
If you’re a CPG brand ready to scale and want to move to a new co-packer, you can get in touch with Tim; you can reach him via his website: https://hospsales.com/ or by emailing him: firstname.lastname@example.org.