"Time to adapt to a stormy market", Dutch butcher says
What to do when an unexpected crisis lands at your door and wipes out almost every customer of your business? Difficult to say if you let the panic overcome but for a smart entrepreneur such as Reijer Evers, owner and founder of VSSMeat, a small butchershop&grocery company from Elspeet, the Netherlands, in every crisis one can find an opportunity to adapt and even expand. In the end, as he said in a short interview for EuroMeat News, "We are butchers and we don't change into carpenters overnight."
His solution was to put away for a while deliveries to foodservice customers in the area since they were forced to close their doors and to turn to the people that are closed in their houses. Of course, he was able to do that mainly by using the digital instruments provided by our era for the companies in the food industry, such as the internet and online payments.
What are your main customers and how is that market present itself at this time?
we are a slaughterhouse/grocery and a lot of our customers are in the foodservice. That turnover is 0 at the moment.
The turnover to our retail customers is very good, but prices are changing every day and some, like trimmings, more times a day and premium beef cuts are changing into inferior beef cuts.
Did you develop any strategies to adapt to these market conditions?
We just change our website to do home delivery to private customers, so they don't have to come out of their houses. Also, we offered free delivery of goods to their door wtihin a radius of 25 km. Outside that radius, we charge a €10 if the order is bellow €100. Yes, it is a crisis, but we still try to see the opportunities in a stormy market.
Are there any disruption in the supply chain from abattoirs to your shop?
There's not yet a real disruption in the supply chain. We receive the meat promptly but we also have to adapt our orders to these new market conditions and the new sales volume.
What is the level of compensation level that you are expected to receive from the government?
The government promises us an almost infinite help. The reserves of the Netherlands are very healthy.
What is the time horizon that allows your business to resist in this stormy market?
The time horizon is difficult to say at the moment. Anyway, as long if there are people, there is a need for food, so it needs a different kind of strategy to make money and maybe different kind of customers, but we are butchers and we don't change into carpenters overnight.
Australia is eyeing the Indonesian meat market which is expected to grow by 1,321% over the next ...