INC2inc, the premier B2B online marketplace for ingredients and packaging in the food and beverage industry, introduces a significant enhancement by offering the INC2inc forecasting tool to its customers. The tool is designed to enable buyers to more simply and accurately forecast production plans and grant trusted trading partners online access to those plans. Several of INC2inc’s trading partners are currently using the forecasting tool to increase visibility between their manufacturing operations and their food and packaging suppliers.
The enhancement solves the industry-wide problem of a lack of visibility into the supply chain. Without the ability to forecast, suppliers are unaware of the needs of the manufacturer until a purchase order is cut. Because of this, suppliers risk being caught without enough lead-time to produce the packaging or ingredient requested, or with the need to store excess inventory, resulting in added expenses.
The tool converts an item level production schedule that is created by the manufacturer and breaks it down to the ingredient level. Then, through an Internet browser interface, the supplier is able to see the ingredients it is expected to supply the manufacturer on a six-week rolling basis, which allows for better control over supplier production.
“Without visibility into the production schedules, we are forced to keep excess inventory levels on hand or make adjustments to our runs on the fly, which is expensive,” said Tammy Staples at Bakery Associates. “With the new enhancement we can avoid those added expenses by being more aware of what our customers need.”
INC2inc has spent the last six months developing, customizing, and extending its online marketplace to successfully meet the unique needs of the food and beverage industry. “By providing visibility into production plans, we have created a mechanism for our customers to work more collaboratively,” said Greg Bott, INC2inc CTO. “This tool builds on INC2inc’s mission to strengthen trading partner relationships.”
The forecasting tool is a free offering for current users of the marketplace. INC2inc will continue to add enhancements to its marketplace offerings by adding logistics services, online payment and reconciliation, and supply-chain planning capabilities.
INC2inc is e-inventing the food chain through its business-to-business (B2B) e-Marketplace for the highly fragmented food and beverage manufacturing industry. INC2inc enables multiple buyers (food manufacturers) and sellers (food ingredient, raw material and packaging suppliers) to transact business on the Web, eliminating inefficiencies, decreasing costs of doing business, and empowering communication, through it’s suite of collaborative commerce tools. INC2inc is headquartered in Dallas, Texas, and was selected for the dbusiness.com “50 to Watch” list. For more information, visit INC2inc’s Web site at www.INC2inc.com.