Grocery Outlet Distribution Center

Grocery Outlet Distribution Center

Distribution is the process of ensuring that a product or service gets to the final consumer or the business user who needs it. Being one of the four elements of the marketing mix, distribution can be done directly by the manufacturer or service provider or using the indirect channel with distribution companies or intermediaries. Product, pricing, and promotion are the other three elements of the marketing mix.

Many at times, these distribution companies build distribution centers all around for easy accessibility of retailers and consumers to the product or service available. A distribution center may be a specialized building constructed to store a variety of products in large quantities and then distributed to the retailers. A grocery distribution center is often built with refrigeration or air conditioning saves food products, organic and freshly baked, or cooked produce before it is distributed.

Grocery Outlet is a supermarket company that provides discounts, overstocked and closeout products from private label suppliers, and name-brand groceries. It is one of the largest opportunistic buyers of grocery items in the country. The company operates on an extreme value business model having 320 locations. Grocery outlet is founded in 1946 and is headquartered in California. Grocery Outlet has stores in California, Idaho, Oregon, Nevada, Pennsylvania, and Washington, with each store having flexibility in its products offering to serve local tastes and demand. The majority of its stores are independently operated by a locally based married couple.

Grocery Outlet has six distribution centers in four states in the United States of America with each using a computerized tracking device to provide controlled distribution, monitor closed-dated products, and offer automated recall.

Below are the distribution centers and its details:

  1. California
  2. Oregon
  3. Pennsylvania
  4. Washington

#1: California: The details of distribution center are;

  • Sacramento warehouse (#90 & #97)

4400 Florin Perkins Road

Sacramento, CA 95826

(916) 379-4152

  • Sacramento Reconditioning Warehouse (#92)

440 Florin Perkins Road

Sacramento, CA 95826


  • Americold Warehouse (#93)

2050Lapham Drive

Modesto, CA 95354

(209) 526-7900

#2: Oregon: The details of distribution center are:

  • Clackamas Warehouse (#95 & #91)

12100 S.E. Jennifer Street

Clackamas, OR 97015

(503) 655-0244

#3: Pennsylvania: The details of the distribution center are:

  • Americold Warehouse (#96)

3800 Hempland Road

Mountville, PA 17554

(503) 655-0244

  • Amelia’s Warehouse (#98)

43 Graybill Road

Leola, PA 17540

(717) 556-8600

#4: Washington: The details of distribution center are:

  • Americold Warehouse (#94)

1301 26th Avenue East

Tacoma, WA 98424

(253) 620-7252

Grocery Outlet sells a variety of food products such as general grocery, frozen foods, bakery, dairy, meat, deli, beer, wine, snacks, and produce. The products sold are not gotten from other retail stores, they are gotten directly from the manufacturers of the products. These products, mostly seasonal merchandise or closeouts are, then moved, from the manufacturer to the grocery outlet stores via a distributor.

Grocery Distribution Center

Grocery Distribution Center

Today, food among all other products is the type humans consume the most. As a result of this, grocery distributors supply large quantities of merchandise to retail stores and often deliver to these stores to ensure the freshness of the product. Also, to effectively do this, grocery distributors have distribution centers scattered all around the country.

A grocery distribution center is a warehouse where manufacturers’ food products are stocked to be supplied to retail stores and traders or directly to customers. A grocery distribution center is often built with refrigeration or air conditioning system to ensure perishable food products are safe and in a conducive environment.

Distribution centers often make use of various equipment in handling the stock of items in their warehouse, such as shipping containers, cartons, pallet jacks, pallets, boxes, and forklifts. With an adequately situated distribution center, the cost of getting a product delivered to its final destination and bulk transportation to the heart of a market can be made easy and at a reasonable price. These distribution centers also enable international commerce with higher competition by getting rid of taxes, tariffs, duty, or VAT a customer would have to pay when ordering internationally.

Some companies with grocery distribution centers scattered across the country are:

  • C&S wholesale grocers
  • Wakefern food corporation
  • H.E. Butt grocery company
  • Brookshire grocery company
  • Grocers supply company

#1: C&S Wholesale Grocers: C&S wholesale grocers is the largest wholesale grocery supply company in the United States, founded in 1918. They distribute about 140,000 different products such as candy, meat, dairy products, fresh bakery items, and also nonfood items to over 7,700 independent and major supermarkets, chain stores, and institutions.

#2: Wakefern Food Corporation: Wakefern food corporation was founded in 1946 and is the 20th largest private company. This distribution company supplies food and consumer products such as grocery, frozen food, meat, and dairy products.

#3: H.E. Butt Grocery Company: H.E. Butt grocery company owns and regulates a network of grocery stores. It was founded in 1905. They supply cooking wares, bakery items, drugs, meats, beers, wines, and seafood.

#4: Brookshire Grocery Company: Brookshire grocery company was found in 1953 and operates a chain of supermarkets. The company distributes its products, including vegetables, beverages, fruits, dairy, meats, seafood, and canned products throughout the United States.

#5: Grocers supply company: Grocers supply company is a wholesale grocery distributor founded in 1923. GSC services over 650 grocery stores, 200 schools, and 1,200 convenience stores. The company distributes grocery, meat, dairy, frozen food, general merchandise, produce, and beauty care products across the country.

With these grocery distributors having their distribution centers strategically placed all around the country, consumers can be easily satisfied, and food products can be transported with minimal cost.

Grocery Distribution Centers

Grocery Distribution Centers

A grocery store is a retail shop that is involved, primarily, in the sales of food, either fresh or preserved. Large grocery stores stocks a notable number of nonfood products such as: household items, and general merchandise. These stores do not manufacture food products; hence, they have distribution centers where these food products are supplied from and then sold to the final consumers.

A grocery distribution center is regarded as a warehouse where food products are stocked to be distributed to grocery stores and retail traders or directly to customers. A grocery distribution center is often built with refrigeration or air conditioning to ensure the preservation of perishable food products.

There are various grocery distributors strategically building distribution centers all around the country to ensure the conveying of food products to grocery stores and retailers is made simplified. Below are some companies with distribution centers:

  • C&S wholesale grocers
  • Wegmans food markets
  • SpartanNash
  • Ben E. Keith company

#1: C&S Wholesale Grocers: C&S wholesale grocers is an American wholesale distributor and was founded in 1918. The company is the largest wholesale grocery supply company in the United States. With over 50 distribution centers in 16 states and storage space of more than 15million square feet, they distribute about 140,000 different products such as candy, meat, dairy products, fresh bakery items, and also nonfood items to over 7,700 independent and major supermarkets, chain stores and institutions.

#2: Wegmans Food Markets: Wegmans food markets is a privately held American supermarket chain founded in 1916 in Rochester, New York. The company owns and operates a chain of grocery stores offering products such as baked goods, seafood, meat, health supplements, wines, herbal remedies, and pharmacy products. With 101 stores, Wegmans food markets plan to construct a new full-service, a regional distribution center in Ashland.

#3: SpartanNash: SpartanNash is an American food distributor and grocery store retailer supplying products and services to help independent grocery retail customers operate efficiently. The company owns and operates over 155 grocery supermarkets and is headquartered in Byron Center, Michigan. In terms of revenue, SpartanNash is the largest food distributor serving military commissaries and exchanges in the U.S.

#4: Ben E. Keith Company: Ben E. Keith Company is a distributor of food products and beverages throughout the United States and is founded in 1906. The company has its headquarter in Fort Worth, Texas, and is the largest private company in Dallas-Fort Worth. Ben E. Keith company distributes through its two operating divisions that is, the food and the beverage division. The food division supplies a full line of produce, meat, frozen foods, dry groceries, paper goods, and supplies to restaurants, schools, and other institutions. The beverage division sells Bud Ice, Bud Light, energy drinks, spirits, and wine.

With grocery distribution centers strategically situated across the country, the cost of getting a product delivered to its final destination can be reduced.

Distribution to Independent grocery Retailers

When manufacturing a food product, you’d agree that putting into consideration the consumers of your food is very important. This way, your business can thrive in the market as your goods get across to a wide range of consumers. One way to ensure this is to get your products on the shelves of independent grocery retailers.

Independent grocery retailers are businesses that sell food products and related products; more importantly, they are privately owned. They play a vital role in the country’s economy employing millions of people and providing unique products that cannot be found in the big box retailers. These independent retailers are the trendsetters most times serviced by distributors and wholesalers in the country.

Below are some grocery distributors that distribute food products to independent grocery retailers:

  • SpartanNash
  • Hummingbird Wholesale
  • Banner Wholesale Grocers
  • United Natural Foods Incorporated

#1: SpartanNash: SpartanNash is an American food wholesaler and market retailer that offers the best of the two universes, with involvement with wholesale distribution and retail benefits. The company owns and operates over 155 grocery supermarkets, supplying over 2100 independent grocery retail locations in the country and is headquartered in Byron Center, Michigan. It also helps independent grocery retail customers operate efficiently. In terms of revenue, SpartanNash is the largest food distributor serving military commissaries and exchanges in the U.S.

#2: Hummingbird Wholesale: Hummingbird is a family-owned organic food distributor that considers the sustainability of farming practices, ingredients, and nutritional value when choosing products. The company has partnered with farmers and local mills to grow and process organic foods that were unavailable and has helped create an excellent food system in Oregon’s valley while servicing independent grocery retailers as far away as Bellingham.

#3: Banner Wholesale Grocers: Banner wholesale grocers is an American food distributor located in Chicago, Illinois. Banner is a distribution company that has been servicing independent grocers since 1926. The company offers a large variety of merchandise specializing in American Hispanic products. Banner has seven trucks that deliver to customers in Iowa, Indiana, and other midwestern states. Their mission is to provide the highest quality services consistently and to provide excellent value to their customers.

#4: United Natural Foods Incorporated: also known as UNF, United Natural Foods, Incorporated, is a wholesale distributor focused on natural and organic food products in the United States. The company offers refrigerated, dry and frozen groceries, supplements, and non-food items such as household cleaning products. 

Supplying to independent grocery retailers’ distributors is all about meeting the needs of the retailers. Meeting the distributors is a good start to know the market trends. If the distributor has a good relationship with the independent grocery retailer, the process of getting your goods onto their shelves becomes easier.

Distribution to Grocery Stores

Distribution to Grocery Stores

When it comes to the process of planning, implementing and controlling the efficient and effective flow of storage of goods and services from the producer to the consumer, the grocery industry is one of the most challenging sectors. In the country today, food is the most consumed product. This is why grocery distributors ship in a large quantity of merchandise to retail stores and often deliver times to these stores to ensure the freshness of the product.

Distributing your products to grocery stores as a manufacturer can be a tedious job. Hence, the need to work with a grocery distributor is critical. Grocery distributors are wholesale agencies that help manufacturers, both large scale and small-scale manufacturers, disburse their organic and freshly baked or cooked produce into the food market.

These food distribution companies help you get your products onto store shelves in a more efficient and organized manner, thereby minimizing costs and saving time. In distributing your food products to grocery stores, below are some notable grocery distributors to check out:

  • Sysco corporation
  • U.S Foods
  • McLane Foodservice
  • Food Services of America (FSA)
  • Performance foodservice

#1: Sysco Corporation: Sysco is the top leading brand headquartered in Houston, Texas, United States. The company is involved in the selling, marketing and distributing of food products, kitchen equipment, smallware, and tabletop items to restaurants, healthcare, and educational facilities, lodging companies and other retailers involved in food services. The company provides service to about 90 countries operating about 330 distribution facilities worldwide.

#2: U.S Foods: U.S foods is one of the leading food distributors in America founded in 1989. The company is involved in servicing the restaurants, the healthcare sector, government, and educational institutions. The company is headquartered in Rosemont, Illinois, and it provides food and similar products to over 250,000 customers all around the country.

#3: McLane Foodservice: McLane is one of the most significant supply chain services leaders involved in distributing grocery and non-food to convenience stores, drug stores, wholesale clubs, discount retailers, and occasional dining restaurants across the United States. The company operates 80 foodservice and grocery distribution centers across the country with one in Brazil and is headquartered in Temple, Texas.

#4: Food Services of America: FSA is one of the country’s largest broadline foodservice distributors founded in 1974. The company is majorly involved in the wholesale distribution of fresh fruits and vegetables to groceries, restaurants, and other retailers all around the United States.

#5: Performance Foodservice: Performance foodservice is an American company founded in 1885. The company supplies a range of food products. As a leading food distributor and supplier in the country, performance foodservice provides quality products, customer solution, and innovative technology.

Grocery distributors play a vital role in distribution to stores as they minimize losses for a manufacturer, store his food products safely, and distribute to the stores to reach a wide range of consumers.

Distribution in Grocery Supples

Grocery store supplies are necessary for providing customers with a convenient shopping experience. These supplies are used in bakeries, deli, grocery stores, restaurants, and other related establishments.



These supplies are used for packaging products, allowing customers to carry their products from the store to their homes with ease. We are familiar with these transport supplies; plastic bags, shopping carts or grocery baskets, food delivery bags, six packet beer, or soda carrier.


Display supplies include every tool needed to set up and render grocery products presentable to customers. Things like deli tags, beer case stackers, display trays, merchandise racks, taster spoons, salad bar accessories, countertop food display warmers, salad bar accessories, and candy or ice-cream toppings dispenser are all display supplies.


Take-out packages are compulsory in any food establishments. They are used to send customers home with ready-made food like sandwiches, salads, seafood, and bakery treats or even raw ingredients that require packaging.


As the name implies, these supplies are used in preparing those premade foods you order for in grocery stores and supermarkets.


Food products are preserved with these supplies at grocery stores. Freezers or coolers are used to maintain frozen goods like meat, dairy products, keeping them fresh before they are picked up by the consumer. Heating supplies are also used to prep meals and keep them warm until customers place their orders.


Grocery stores have cleaning and safety textiles for kitchen and store staff. Dishcloths, hand gloves, aprons, chef whites, pot holders, and other textiles are used in preparing products for the customers.


Distribution in Grocery Supples

These supplies are necessary to store food products to retain their freshness properly.  Are you wondering where you can purchase these supplies with ease? The following companies specialize in distributing grocery store equipment and supplies.


Raimac is a 101-year-old company that started in W.T Rainford before recently moving to North Langley. They deal in a wide range of grocery store supplies like upright freezers and cooler doors, stock trucks, bread trucks, contact label guns, and so forth. Raimac focuses its business on independent grocery stores. One of the stores they supply equipment to is 7-eleven grocery stores.


A leading distributor of restaurant supplies and equipment, this store is based in Lancaster, PA.  They have thousands of available products and ship over 5.5 million products. For your convenience, their equipment can easily be ordered online.


They distribute supermarket equipment and supplies and also provide maintenance services. Grocery store equipment and supplies are necessary for the maintenance of the store and the customer’s comfort.

Distribution in the Grocery Industry

Distribution is, perhaps, the most underestimated factor in food product marketing. Many marketers are of the assumption that making great products will automatically lead to high sales. However, many strategies are employed in order to ensure that consumers start patronizing a particular product.

Grocery stores or supermarkets rely on distributors to fill their shelves. Pantries will stay empty without the vast network of distribution that takes place across the country. Thanks to the efforts of these efficient grocery distributors, fresh grocery products continue to arrive at stores. Distributions of food products require special attention because they are easily perishable. Food products can quickly become stale and unfit for consumption, unlike durable goods like clothes, electronic items, accessories, which can be kept on the store shelve for years and still retain its quality.

The Grocery industry acts as middlemen between food producers and consumers. This industry has exhibited a considerable level of growth over the past few years, and it is estimated to continue to grow at a steady pace over the subsequent years.

With the innovation of specialized marketing channels, it is unusual for manufacturers to market their products personally. Many products do not go as far as through the doors of grocery stores because they remain with the local marketers or farmers. They are unable to find profitable methods of distributing them. Some distributors specialize in conventional grocery items, while some handle natural, specialty products. The conventional distribution path for a food product is from the manufacturer to the distributor then to the retailer before the products finally get to the consumers.


These channels can be divided into two: namely, direct and indirect channels. The direct channel is simply a direct-to-consumer model, it allows the consumer to purchase the goods directly from the producers. This channel eliminates middlemen like retailers and wholesalers.

An indirect channel involves the buying of goods from a wholesaler or retailer.  Indirect channels involve multiple intermediaries before the products finally end up with the consumer. However, this can create a complex system that makes distribution management difficult.


Knowing consumers’ desire is the key to a grocer’s success. Tweak your products to fit the customer’s tastes while also retaining the quality of the products. Find your niche and establish yourself in that area. Take whole foods; for instance, the company has established itself as the leader in the organic and natural food segment. They care about their customers who continue to patronize them regardless of their expensive food products. Proper inventory management is also a necessity.

Notwithstanding the complexity of distribution in the grocery industry, relevance in the grocery industry is not unattainable.

Distribution Grocery Channels

Distribution Grocery Channels

A Distribution channel is a chain of intermediaries through which goods or services pass until it reaches the last buyer or consumer. While distribution channels may seem endless and complicated, traditionally, these channels include the manufacturer, wholesaler, retailer, and nowadays, even the internet.   Distribution channels are part of the downstream process of getting products to the customers.


In choosing the right distribution channel for your products, you should consider how quickly you want your products to reach their buyers. Take the nature of the products into consideration. Certain products are best distributed via a direct distribution channel. Such products include; animal or farm products. Other foodstuffs are better served by an indirect channel.

A company that chooses multiple distribution channels like; online sales and retailers should ensure that these channels do not clash with each other. Formulate tactics to ensure that one channel does not overpower the other.


Every grocery store is usually confronted with problems related to the distribution network and inventory merchandising. The wide variety of items in grocery stores that often require choices makes it difficult for them grocery store owners or managers to handle inventory effectively.

Problems can occur when distribution partners have inadequate knowledge of the products or target market. This could most likely result in poor service to customers, and loss of sales. This problem can be avoided by educating and arming distributors with adequate training programs that could help familiarize them with the products.

The growing demand for healthy food alternatives has to lead to a gradual decline in the business of grocery stores. Studies reported in Forbes, 2015 show that consumers are willing to pay more to eat healthy foods. Although, this does not necessarily have to pose a problem anymore as manufacturers distributors and are striving to make healthier food options available to the consumers.

The stress of handling fresh, easily perishable foods like fruits and vegetables in a bid to maximize the freshness and get it to the consumers on time. This poses an additional challenge as perishable foods need to move out of the door as soon as possible to maintain its short shelf life, or else it results in a loss for the producers.

Seasonal peaks and shortage of manpower is another problem facing distribution channels to grocery stores. Distribution is highly dependent on manpower.  The older generations who are more inclined towards this are gradually retiring with less young generation willing to replace them. Young graduates seem unenthusiastic about careers in warehousing.

Lastly, more extended distribution channels can mean less profit for each intermediary for its service. The longer the chain of supply,  the lesser the dividend of each channel.

Distribution Company for Grocery Stores

Distribution Company for Grocery Stores

The grocery industry is considered the most important retail channel in the United States. Operators in this industry generally retail food products such as: seafood, canned and frozen foods, animal products, cereals, foodstuffs, baked goods, and the rest.


Grocery stores need distribution companies for consistency and ease. Distributors are a grocer’s safety net. They bring stability and consistency to the stores, ensuring that the shelves are always filled up, and the grocery stores are never out of your favorite brand products.

The grocery industry is highly competitive. With over 150,000 grocery stores competing for market share, the industry has been growing at a considerably fast speed for several years. That being said, below are some top distribution companies for grocery stores.



This is an American wholesale distributor of food and grocery items. It is known as the largest wholesale grocery distributor in the United States.  C&S grocers were founded in 1918 with its headquarters in New Hampshire, United States. It has over 50 distribution centers in 16 states.


Core-mark is one of the largest and highly revered marketers of fresh and broad-line products to the grocery retail industry. They supply a wide variety of products and offer marketing programs to over 29,000 locations in North-America. They provide services to traditional convenience stores, drug stores, grocery, and specialty store and to other small retailers that sell packaged goods to consumers


Kroger is one of the companies holding the largest market share in the supermarket and grocery stores in the US industry. It is the largest supermarket chain by revenue and the second-largest retailer, thanks to its 36 distribution centers. It delivers food products to 2622 stores in 34 different states across the United States.


McLane Company Inc is a 44 billion full chain supplier of groceries and foodservice to convenience stores, chain restaurants, and mass merchants around the United States. McLane more than fifty distribution centers making it one of the nation’s largest fleet. The company delivers more than 50,000 unique products to about 90,000 locations in the United States.



This is a privately held American chain of supermarkets. Its headquarters is located in Rochester, New York. Wegmans has 101 stores as of October 2019 in the mid-Atlantic and North-Eastern regions.


Popularly known as the neighborhood grocery stores, Trader Joe’s is an American chain of grocery stores with its headquarters in Monrovia, California. As of April 2020, it has over 505 stores in 42 states nationwide. Trader Joe’s is known for its brands of amazing food and drinks.

So, if you are on the lookout for grocery distribution companies that will not disappoint, these companies should be on your list.

Distribution Channel Grocery Stores

Distribution Channel Grocery Stores

Grocery stores are large stores where groceries (foodstuffs, household items, and other commodities) can be purchased. There are food distributors who specialize in delivering grocery items to grocery stores. Getting your products on the shelves of grocery stores is a great way to expand your brand to a new customer base. If you are wondering how to do this successfully, we are here to help.

These few tips will guide you in achieving your aim.


This is a form of market research; it is an essential factor in launching a successful business or brand. You can visit local store retailers to study their products and consumer preferences. Talk to buyers if you can to get their likes, dislikes, and preferences in a product. Even, you may go as far as conducting a market audit to acquire adequate knowledge of the consumer base you are targeting and the risks associated with the market space.


Proper packaging can market a product better than any other sales strategies. Once you have done adequate research to help guide the development of your product, you can use this information to create a professional, attractive packaging that will make your products stand out on the shelves of grocery stores. Working with a topnotch product designer will help you get your consumers impressed and attracted to your products.


You can get your products to grocery stores by either approaching each store yourself,  hoping they will accept your products, or you can partner with the right distributor who will do most of the work for you. The latter is more advisable and less exhausting because the truth is retailers are reluctant to devote shelf space to new products. They would instead continue to sell existing products that have already earned the trust of consumers and generates lots of sales.

Since these distributors are already familiar with grocery stores, working with one will significantly improve your chances of success. You will need a little help from these experts to reach your destination. Listen to your distributor’s feedback carefully as you can trust them to give you great tips on growing your business.


Once you’ve got a distributor, you are ready to start speaking to grocery stores. At this stage, they will mostly want to take your products on consignment. Consignment launches your product and gives you a method of testing how well it performs in the market. This means they will only pay you after your products have been sold. Do not be alarmed. If you have a quality product, it will sell out in on time.

Achieving these stages does not mean you have to relent. You still need to do your part in marketing and spreading awareness about your products. Marketing strategies like social media campaigns, trade show events will prove productive.