Food manufacturers with a desire to increase sales, distribution and market share in the Chicagoland region face several obstacles. It is no longer adequate to get a broker or distributor. You must now "pull" your products through the distributor or risk failure. Many manufacturers agree that distributor sales representatives have become "order takers" rather than sales people for particular products.
Additionally, market trends have forced food brokers to represent more lines, which also leave some manufacturers with limited attention. That is, unless you can give them solid leads to follow up on. Providing leads to your broker also creates accountability so that you can check their progress and make it easier for them to succeed.
The feeling of many brokers and distributors is that they have no time to "pioneer a market."
Common challenges facing manufacturers selling to our industry: