UNFI Updates June 2023

UNFI 2024 Supplier Planning Meetings
UNFI has released their 2024 marketing rates and deadlines. Supplier Relationship Manager’s will be reaching out to you and your Distributor Account Executive to schedule a date for 2024 planning.

As UNFI continues to integrate their Natural Supplier Relationship Management and Conventional Regional Retail Category Merchandising teams, UNFI has made the decision to align the negotiations of two key programs, Circulars and Hot Sheets, to the Regional Category Merchandising teams, for the Grocery, Frozen, and Dairy categories (excludes GM/HBC, Wellness, Pet, Candy, and Baby categories).

Beginning in September 2024, Circulars and Hot Sheets will be planned and solicited by the Regional Merchandising Team. To make this transition as smooth as possible, suppliers will continue to have the option to submit their proposals for these two programs to their SRM. Suppliers will then be contacted by the Regional Retail Category Manager to finalize those details. The Save Every Day (SED) and Shippers/Pallets programs will continue to be planned with the Regional Retail Merchandising team for 2024.

UNFI will be providing a complete contact list for the Supplier Relationship Management and Regional Retail Merchandising teams.

UNFI In-Store Execution Program
UNFI has expanded their in-store execution program to include Natural, Specialty, and Organic products. To date, this program has been focused on the assortment distributed from their Conventional DCs. On April 30th, 2023 the program expanded to all distribution DCs for retailers currently participating in the program. 

UNFI is committed to providing excellent customer service and shelf support through this program. This includes managing and executing category business resets, remodels, new store openings, re-tags, and new affiliations, as well as cutting in new items on the shelves. UNFI collaborates with third party labor providers and their own Shelf Services team to perform in-store execution work. UNFI plans to expand this program to meet additional customers’ needs. As part of this expansion, suppliers will be deducted for work performed in retailers where UNFI provides in-store labor support.

The program offers several benefits, including:

  • Improved consistency in reset execution through better traceability and accountability
  • Faster new item introductions to shelf
  • Enhanced planogram integrity and compliance
  • Real-time reporting with image capability via a secure web portal for suppliers

If you have any questions about the program, please contact Retail.Execution@unfi.com.

UNFI Marketplace Program
The UNFI Marketplace Program enables suppliers to sell their products on  UNFI’s  EasyOptions and myUNFI websites, shipping directly to retailers across the country. This opportunity is available for products that are not currently slotted in UNFI DCs, allowing suppliers to expand their item selection and sales, while providing more options for their retailers.

Based on the pilot success, UNFI has updated their customer ordering platform to include the assortment offered through the UNFI Marketplace Program. This is an exciting opportunity for suppliers to expand their portfolios with UNFI.

Currently, UNFI is looking for suppliers and items that meet the following requirements:

  • Suppliers must be able to dropship to customers
  • Items may not be currently carried in UNFI DCs
  • Items may not contain alcohol, tobacco, or CBD 

If you are interested in the program, please fill out UNFI’s inquiry form here.