“This is really industry changing, and when you talk about changing the way people think, for instance having their own mixing center versus shared space with competitors, then it takes a while to get past that curve,” she says. “The direct-to-consumer piece is helping to drive that change, though. In addition, as companies move forward to take costs out of the supply chain, this is one way to do it. As they try and improve their service level on the shelf, and as they look to improve their sustainability profile, this is one way to do it.”
As for the future, “The entire industry is trying to figure out what the consumer is going to want 5 years from now. Ultimately, a collaborative solution that can respond to those new demands is going to be the answer,” says Hambleton.