By - July 1, 2015

There’s a buying side to selling groceries

Premium Vanilla

We know our customers want to find a variety of quality products when they shop at Publix. But, did you know we have teams of associates who are responsible for making that possible? And, they’re not just in our stores.

Each retail business unit has category managers and buyers who work diligently to make sure we have the right product mix to draw customers in and make them want to shop only at Publix. These associates are tasked with deciding which products to continue carrying and what new products to bring to our stores. They also work with our suppliers to get the best deals on products for our customers.

“Throughout the year, we undergo category reviews, which allow us to take a look at our product offerings and decide where to make changes,” said Category Manager Mike Palestrini. “We have to be experts on what our customers want, what the trends are and what our competitors are offering, so we can make the best decisions for our customers.”

They do this by meeting with suppliers and reviewing new products, negotiating for promotions on certain items and ultimately purchasing the products from our suppliers.

“It’s really all about evaluating what’s working and what isn’t, and making educated decisions based on what we know about our customers,” said Mike. “Our ultimate goal is to give our customers what they want, when they want it. It’s an exciting challenge.”

Talk about a sweet gig!

A fun fact about our purchasing team is that they also are responsible for bringing private label items to our stores — including Publix Premium ice cream! The team works with our manufacturing and marketing teams to create new flavors, names and packaging for our ice cream, which just happens to be the No. 1 selling ice cream in all our stores.