Are you watching the commodity markets? Should you be?

May 7th, 2014

The answer is yes, and if you are not watching the correct Indices, you could be making some huge mistakes in your sourcing strategies.

Todays post is by Ron Southard, CEO of SafeSourcing Inc.

A customer asked me the other day what indexes we followed in our sourcing practices. Although this is a very broad question that could be answered any number of ways such as what product are you speaking about, it is in fact a very good question. Let me give you an example.

Let’s suppose you are planning your strategy to buy egg products such as whole eggs or liquid eggs or egg mixes. The first question you need to resolve is what makes up the largest cost in the egg farming process? To provide a short answer, it is feed. The follow on question to this should be; what type of grain makes up the feed? Again a short answer is corn. Resultantly these two questions should lead to the conclusion that keeping track of grain market futures is probably the best bet for locking in your pricing strategy depending on the length of your contract. As an example, with this information you might insert escalator and or  de-escalator language in your  terms and conditions request and resultantly in your contract based on the market price of  a specific crop at the time you negotiated your pricing.

The next step is determining where you can find this type of information. At SafeSourcing we use the CME Group  CME is the world’s leading and most diverse derivatives marketplace.  Relative to the egg market there is also another tool available that can be useful which looks at the average weekly price of egg products by region of the country. Using the two together is normally your best bet to build a solid sourcing strategy.

If you are not watching the markets that drive the pricing of the products you buy, you may make some significant mistakes that could negatively impact your financial plan down the road.

If you’d like to learn more about how SafeSourcing can assist you to determine how to best uncover the hidden costs that make up your products, please contact a Safesourcing Customer Services Account Manager.

We look forward to and appreciate your comments.

Ron Southard

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