The consumer products industry, in the simplest term, consists of organizations that manufacture products that are used by the consumer. This includes sub-vertical industries such as Consumer Packaged Goods (CPG), Food and Beverages (F&B), Consumer Durable Goods, and tobacco. Below are specific and broad challenges faced by each:
- Changing Consumer Demands: Today, consumer products companies need to be consumer focused. Demand has a tendency to fluctuate rapidly. For example, consumer preferences have altered greatly in recent years as demand shifts toward healthier and sustainable options. Consequently, manufacturing success is closely related to time-to-market and new product introduction capabilities. Additionally, demand can fluctuate cyclically and with economic volatility. The success and profitability of any organization in this industry is heavily dependent on how effective these companies are at addressing the changing demands of consumers.
- Shrinking Operating Margins: With global competition, companies are faced with the challenge of meeting global price points. This creates additional pressure, as manufacturers need to ensure the delivery of high quality products while finding innovative ways to cut costs. Companies also need to account for fluctuations in factors such as oil prices and their effect on transportation costs or petrochemicals which may be used for agrochemicals and packaging.
- Compliance and Regulatory Pressures: The global regulatory environment is dynamic. Companies are faced with the challenges of mitigating operational risk and managing nonconformances. Creating additional pressures, as manufacturers rely on the global supplier network to battle shrinking operating margins, meeting international compliance and regulations becomes a factor.
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