Fall Case-Lot: Sales Heat Up as Weather Cools 

With rising inflation and a challenging economy, Associated Food Stores’ recent fall case lot sale was well-timed to meet the needs of store guests throughout the company’s service area. As has been typical for the past several years, case lot is executed in two regions to maximize labor and space at the Farr West Distribution Center. The sale ran from September 7 to September 20 in Region 1 and from September 28 to October 11 in Region 2. 

“The fall case lot promotion for 2022 was another successful event due to the amazing efforts of our retail, operations, and procurement teams coming together to show what ‘One Associated’ is all about,” said Todd Bell, vice president of procurement. “There are many challenges that stand in the way of executing an event of this magnitude, especially in the environment we continue to operate in with supply chain roadblocks at every corner.” 

As AFS has experienced during case lot promotions over the past few years, there were items that were not available to run during the event. Though availability had an impact on sales versus last year’s case lot, when compared item to item, AFS still saw a wholesale increase of 12.13 percent versus 2021.   

On the retail side, units were up over five percent during the first two weeks of the “Region One” case lot sale. Taking inflation into account, AFS leaders are pleased with these results. 

“Due to a lot of effort to plan and work with our suppliers well in advance to source inventory, we were able to provide a 98.1 percent service level on case lot inventory ordered during the promotion,” said Todd. “Many factors contributed to these service levels including our retail members continued commitment to provide commit orders. These pre-commits are critical to the ultimate success of case lot events.” 

Nearly every team at AFS plays a role in executing effective case lot sales. Without procurement, distribution, transportation, marketing, advertising and many others, the sale would be impossible to accomplish. Of special note, team members Debbie Smith and Loni Erickson in inventory management and Dari Perry, case lot project manager, are incredibly instrumental in positioning the entire company for case lot success. 

“Once again, our teams came together to place commit orders, work with suppliers to procure inventory, plan logistics, receive and ship product to retail and then execute a terrific event for our guests at store level,” said Todd. “It’s amazing to see everyone’s hard work paying off.”