Executive summary Effective supply chain optimization in the food and beverage industry calls for e-commerce systems that exchange product requirements and manufacturing data with downstream customers.That ability makes the manufacturer more attractive as a supplier, because, customers can better meet their market requirements, extend shelf life, and increase consumer satisfaction by providing a more consistent, safer product.At the same time, incoming data on raw materials quality and composition can aid in formulation planning and production planning, which leads to increased manufacturing agility. Manufacturing agility lets manufacturers respond to their customer's supply chain demands, and serve premium, high-margin market niches. The keys to food and beverage e-commerce are XML (Extensible Markup Language), and an e-commerce messaging system such as Microsoft's BizTalk. The most practical overall solutions are probably assembled using core software that connects existing plant systems with downstream customers, both external and internal.