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Eight tips for assuring adequate capacity

Sources interviewed for this article came up with the following list of tips for CPG companies to ensure that production capacity needs are met adequately:

• Create a design brief that spells out each stakeholder’s roles and expectations.

• Create a range of volume- and time-needs possibilities. Determine which scenario is most likely, but develop contingency plans for each possibility.

• Inquire whether prospective contract packagers can supply the capacity you need, based on your full range of possibilities. If one packer can’t, consider splitting the work among multiple packers.

• Have you thought about channel distribution growth? If not, you might be missing out on a revenue growth opportunity.

• Ask contract packagers how much how excess capacity they keep on hand in their plant, and the circumstances that might cause the excess capacity to run out.

• How accurate is your product forecasting? Are all relevant stakeholders “in the loop” about it? What could be done to improve it?

• Ask contract packagers to document their success in handling capacity challenges.

• Inquire about a contract packager’s willingness to invest in your needs.

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