Produce Buyer

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Job Description: 

Merchants Distributors (MDI) is a privately-owned wholesale grocery store distributor headquartered in Hickory, NC. MDI supplies over 700 retail food stores with food and non-food items in NC, SC, GA, TN, VA, AL, WV, OH, FL, PA and KY.

The organization is a progressive and profitable company that is always improving results and is recognized by its employees for providing opportunities to grow, both personally and professionally. MDI is valued by its customers and suppliers for providing quality products and services as efficiently as possible.

In this role your primary duties will be procurement of all assigned produce in order to provide top quality product at a price that achieves both retail customers' and company goals and objectives.

Perform Other Duties as Instructed by Supervisor: 
Responsibilities & Duties: 
  • Maintain gross profit on all assigned items in order to achieve yearly budgeted objective. 
  • Maintain inventory levels on assigned items in order to achieve service level objectives and keep shrink as low as possible. 
  • Maintain turns of assigned product in order to meet budgeted objectives and provide the freshest produce possible to retail customers. 
  • Work closely with merchandisers of retail groups we service in order to formulate information on ad item that will meet customer needs. (Ad plans, quality projections, ship dates). 
  • Seek out new items and present to MDI customers for placement on an ongoing basis in order to provide our retail customers with a competitive selection of top quality produce. 
  • Communicate with merchandisers on an ongoing basis all information concerning new items, product changes, market changes, SRP changes, and any problems that would affect good delivery of product to their stores. 
  • Inform all suppliers of MDI's quality requirements for fresh produce being delivered to our distribution center. Set standards, "PLU" numbers, and UPC codes where needed on all items stocked. 
  • Work closely with warehouse and in-house quality control inspector to ensure proper rotation and distribution of all assigned items. 
  • Work closely with quality control inspectors to ensure the highest level of all inbound and in-house produce in order to meet retail customers' standards when delivered at store level. 
  • Increase the retail produce sales of MDI customers to meet or exceed assigned budgeted sales goals. 
  • May perform other duties as assigned by manager.
  • Must have good communication skills.
  • Must have successfully managed a produce department.
  • Must have three to five years experience in produce operations and related areas, including produce merchandiser and produce buyer.
  • Experience in FOB procurement.
  • Floral experience.
  • Able to handle a stressful atmosphere.
  • Good understanding of USDA standards.
  • Coordinated multiple ad groups simultaneously.
  • Four year degree in Business Administration.

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Our company is an Equal Opportunity employer. All qualified applicants will receive consideration for employment without regard to race, national origin, age, sex, religion, disability, sexual orientation, marital status, veteran status, gender identity or expression, or any other basis protected by local, state or federal law.

This policy applies with regard to all aspects of one’s employment, including hiring, transfer, promotion, compensation, eligibility for benefits and termination.

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