As snack food company Hostess launches plans to restart production and get its iconic Twinkies, Ding Dongs and Ho Hos back on store shelves, it will need to not only optimize manufacturing processes, but also use route planning software to ensure it can meet consumer demand and effectively distribute its products.
Hostess to restart manufacturing, distribution
Many assumed that snack giant Hostess had stopped production for good when it decided to close its doors after a union strike halted operations. After filing for bankruptcy, Metropoulos & Co. and Apollo Global Management acquired many of Hostess' assets for $410 million and retained the brand's well-known name. The company will plug investments worth $60 million into operations in the coming months, according to The Wall Street Journal, and plans to reopen several of its bakeries in Indiana, Illinois, Kansas and Georgia and start production soon.
"Hostess expects to begin hiring next month, with preliminary operations at some of the locations expected to commence in late May," read a statement released by the corporation. "The company is aiming to have product back on shelves by the end of July."
Changing up distribution methods
With Hostess aiming to get its products in stores so quickly, it will need to ensure it can produce - and distribute - enough of the popular treats throughout the country. Many devoted consumers stocked up on the products immediately after the company announced it would shut down operations, and their stashes may be running low. Most grocers haven't had Hostess products in weeks, and the brand will need to make certain customers are able to find its snacks.
The Wall Street Journal reported Hostess will change up the way it distributes goods after production restarts. Rather than making stops at individual grocery stores, the company will instead make large deliveries to supermarket warehouses. In an effort to satisfy Hostess fans, the company won't only be distributing its famous products to national grocery chains - the brand will also increase its focus on delivering the snacks to small convenience stores and dollar stores. Hostess claims this strategy will ensure customers have access to the freshest snacks possible.
Any organization that employs a new distribution model to cut costs, optimize delivery schedules and guarantee products remain fresh needs to determine what the most direct route to destinations will be, particularly if it is completing direct store delivery. Route optimization software can help these firms plan the most effective routes and get product to market in a timely fashion.