Kroger’s Dallas division is launching Kroger Restaurant Supply, which it calls a response to persistent and lingering supply chain issues.
The service, which began this week, is exclusively for the Dallas area. It markets itself as an alternative to traditional restaurant suppliers such as Houston-based Sysco, the largest wholesale restaurant supplier in the United States, and Illinois-based US Foods.
Kroger says regional restaurants, bakeries and catering businesses are the types of businesses that will use the service.
Next day deliveries on all orders of $250 or more are free. Businesses can order until midnight, seven days a week. Kroger says it’s more flexible than competitors, which can have minimum orders of up to $1,000, prices vary widely depending on order size and a fixed day of the week for deliveries. Kroger said its prices will be competitive and restaurants will have the option of ordering by the case or in smaller quantities.
“When our D-FW restaurants think of food, we want them to think of Kroger,” said Keith Shoemaker, president of Kroger Dallas Division. He called wholesale “an extension of our overall grocery ecosystem.”
“Like our resident shoppers, we know our commercial customers want options and solutions that deliver fresh food, consistent pricing and reliability,” Shoemaker said.
Family-owned Eno’s Pizza Tavern, which has three locations, is one of the first to use the service.
Shane Spillers, co-owner of Eno’s, said the company is still using its longtime suppliers, but will use Kroger’s service to complete incomplete orders that have always been a reality but have worsened in recent years with multiple supply chain issues.
“Our managers constantly have to travel in their own vehicles to the stores in search of missing ingredients: peppers or flour. We can’t make pizza without flour,” Spillers said. “It will save our staff a lot of heartache. I need customer service oriented people.
“Supply chain bottlenecks are affecting nearly every restaurant across the country – this opportunity comes at a perfect time for small independent restaurants,” said Corey Mobley, North Texas Region Executive Director. of the Texas Restaurant Association.
Jay Scherger, director of Kroger’s technology and digital/e-commerce accelerator, said the idea came as America’s largest traditional grocer was looking for new opportunities to leverage investments in grocery. in line.
That includes Kroger’s automated online grocery facility in Dallas that will be able to process 18,000 orders a day when it opens later this year. For now, Scherger said, orders for Kroger Restaurant Supply are now being fulfilled from the company’s warehouse in Keller which supplies the company’s stores.
The facility has been under construction for two years with Kroger’s UK technology partner Ocado in south Dallas. Kroger will also use it to make door-to-door deliveries to customers as far away as Oklahoma City, Austin and San Antonio.
“We’ve spoken with dozens of restaurants and chefs, and we know we can supply them with smaller quantities more frequently,” he said. “We look at new and old problems that we can solve, and this is the fruit of that process.”
Businesses with the correct tax credentials can place orders at kroger.com/restaurantsupply.
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