11 Aug

What is…to the grocery shelf?

This a blog about how to be successful getting the product you have developed in your kitchen, garage, or back yard grill, onto the grocery store shelves of America.  You may have found success selling your wonderful product to your friends, local farmers market, or even the internet. But taking your product to the retail, wholesale, distributor, mass and drug chains in the United States is a daunting, expensive, and risky proposition even for huge corporations. 

Still, if you are like me, you see products on the shelf and say to yourself, “I bet I could do that.” The answer is yes, you probably can. Regular people with just an idea can and do find their way to success with innovative products that the big boys just couldn’t dream up.  And when they do, and the product  is now on the shelves of 40, 000 major grocery stores in America,  there can be one heck of a payday when it get’s gobbled up by one of those mega companies. 

I’d love to see you achieve success at getting your product on the shelves of major grocery chains, and that is what this blog is about.  How to get your product on the shelves of 40,000 retail grocery stores in America? 

 Who am I?

My name is Dan Krause.  I guess you’d have to say I’m a grocery guy. If I was writing a resume I would call myself a CPG Food Executive to be fancy.  CPG stands for Consumer Product Goods and if you are developing your own gourmet, natural or organic product to be sold to people or consumers, now you too are a CPG Food Executive. 

My first job was with General Mills in 1982.  I started as an accountant and my first responsibility was running the Trace desk, which tracked trade expense. I didn’t have a clue what that was.  After a while, I learned that trade expense, was a significant expense that could make or break a product’s profitability.  I’ll tell you all about trade expense in future posts because it’s going to become a very integral part of your products success and profitability, unless your product is so good it never has to go on sale. Just remember, even filet mignon goes on sale once in a while! 

And so began my nearly 30 years in the food business.  I eventually gave up accounting and went into sales where much of the information for this blog will be derived.  I have been a Sales Rep, Territory Manager, Account Manager, Business Development Manager, Director of Specialty Sales, and Director of Sales Operations.  All of my positions were with General Mills, Zatarain’s and McCormick & Co, Inc.,.   I have called on every type of food customer, and sold every kind of product from cereal to dairy and hot sauces to frozen. 

 Why blog?

My wife Cherie and I are foodies.  We’ve always loved the kitchen and some of our fondest memories of early married life were watching Julia Child on PBS over lunch hour.  We became food snobs after living in New Orleans, but we gave that up, and now are finding that we need to eat healthier and have discovered the joy in local and organic foods.  We try to buy natural, organic or local products when possible.   

So this blog is where my life and my business intersect. In so many ways the kitchen, food, and your local markets are symbols of life.  They sustain life.  My business of consulting with entrepreneurs is how I stay fulfilled, and I know your products success will allow you to thrive!    

If you are trying to develop a new product or already have one developed but face the problem of what to do next to get the product out into grocery stores, then I would like to help.  My goal is to share all of my knowledge in the fervent hope that just one tiny bit of information you might glean from these blogs could make the difference between failure and getting your product on the shelves of major grocery chains.  If you see value in the information you may need additional information I’d love to consult with you on a project. 

 When and where?

The blog is planned for once a week and will be posted at my website www.tothegroceryshelf.com.  

For now keep working….to the grocery shelf!