ERP systems are helping the pet food industry to eliminate manual processes and save money by using real-time data to make better decisions.
Pet food had the largest market value in the whole pet care sector in the UK last year. With a market value of £3.1 billion, it exceeded veterinary services, which had a market value of £2.4 billion in 2021.
Pet food sales have increased by 5.8% in 2022, as people love their pets and have plenty of them. Research carried out between 2020 and 2022 revealed 59% of households in Britain owned at least one pet. This equates to 17 million households, which have around 34 million domestic animals between them.
Pet food industry challenges
During the Covid-19 pandemic, online pet food purchases rocketed as more people bought four-legged friends for company during the lockdowns. Subscription sign-ups reached a record high and e-commerce gained ground over traditional in-store purchasing.
This trend has continued, with e-commerce presenting fresh challenges to the pet food industry. Pet food manufacturers are currently managing challenging issues such as ongoing supply chain disruptions and labour shortages.
Many are reviewing old business systems to address these issues and are turning to ERP software in the realisation it supports greater operational efficiency.
ERP software enhances efficiency
While pet food manufacturers and retailers are facing challenges right now, a leading on-premises or cloud ERP solution, aided by industry-specific customisations, can help companies save money and time and improve supplier and customer relationships.
Production software enables businesses to operate efficiently in a high-growth industry that's shifting to online channels, as well as in bricks and mortar premises.
Pet food manufacturers need reliable business systems to support their multifaceted operations and match customer expectations.
A lot of pet food manufacturers use legacy systems and basic accounting software. Many also still rely on spreadsheets and manual processes. However, information can't be shared across these systems. This will present significant challenges for manufacturers.
View real-time data
Not only is there a high demand for pet food, but the UK is also in the grip of a labour shortage and supply chain disruptions. When these individual challenges are combined, it creates what has been described as a "perfect storm" of challenges to overcome.
Having a unified Enterprise Resource Planning platform in place enables manufacturers to view real-time data. This supports efficient forecasting, inventory management and supply chain planning.
Businesses will no longer have to study spreadsheets, which is time-consuming and can lead to companies lagging behind rivals with integrated software solutions.
Collaborate with logistics providers
Pet food manufacturers typically work with independent logistics providers to take their products to the consumer market. These logistics firms often have their own technology platform for tracking shipment and delivery data.
When manufacturers have their own logistics solutions, they can't integrate with the distributors' systems. This means basic functions, such as managing inventories and pinpointing the delivery time, will require emails, phone calls and other manual checkpoints.
Using ERP software for pet food manufacturing enables end-to-end supply chain visibility, more efficient performance and greater customer satisfaction.
If you're a pet food manufacturer relying on an outdated system, you could be lacking the tools required to improve your operational performance and profitability.
It is possible to solve many of your challenges with customisations for your ERP software to enhance functionality. The technology can be implemented for pet food businesses of all sizes to improve operational capabilities.
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