Talking Shop with… George W. Prest

George W. Prest, CEO of MHI, says attending MODEX 2014 can help grocers create efficiencies in their distribution and supply chain operations.

Tell us about MODEX 2014.
George W. Prest: MODEX 2014 is the industry’s newest expo for the manufacturing and supply chain industries. It is where the best and brightest thinkers in the supply chain gather to discuss the trends of today and the challenges of tomorrow.Prest_George

The expo will be held March 17-20 at Atlanta’s Georgia World Congress Center and offers a variety of supply chain solution sourcing, education and networking opportunities.

How does MODEX 2014 benefit grocery retailers?
Grocers will find more than 800 of the leading solution providers and 150 educational sessions at MODEX to help them create efficiencies in their distribution and supply chain operations.

These solutions include third party logistics (3PLS), automatic identification, robotics and automation, supply chain visibility and security solutions, storage and safe handling solutions, reverse logistics, cold chain solutions and more. MODEX will also offer a variety of networking opportunities including keynote sessions and social hours after the show.

What do you think are the key trends in the grocery industry in terms of what consumers want?
Consumers want what they have traditionally wanted: quality, variety, convenience and affordability. However, today’s consumer increasingly wants to know where their food comes from and that it is sustainable and safe. Because of this, visibility into the food supply chain and sustainability will remain a top priority for consumers.

What do retailers need?
Mobile solutions are impacting some of the largest retail supply chain operations. These solutions provide real-time information and immediate communication on inventory and supply chain processes that boost productivity and effectiveness. These mobile solutions provide retailers with instant access to shipment and inventory information in the field or anywhere on the floor.

Also, retailers need better unit load design that reduces damage and unnecessary packaging and cuts operational costs. The use of reusable transport packaging materials—such as pallets and crates—is also on the rise.

These solutions improve visibility, cut costs, reduce product damage and lower the environmental footprint—and they all can be found at MODEX 2014.

Sustainability and traceability are key issues for the retail community today, how does MODEX help?
Grocery retailers must be able to respond quickly and confidently to unexpected changes such as spikes in demand, supply chain disruption, product recalls and late deliveries. Retailers are increasingly applying a risk management approach across all of their facilities and suppliers. This helps them improve visibility and improve agility and safety across their supply chains.

Leading companies are also partnering with sustainable suppliers and holding them accountable. They are also sharing information on their supply chain with consumers.
MODEX can help grocers meet these challenges with visibility and mobile solutions that help retailers view supply chains as a unified whole, and provide control for critical functions anytime, anywhere for instant inventory traceability.

MODEX also showcases the latest solutions for streamlined distribution center and transportation operations that reduce the carbon footprint.

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