Ask The Experts Recap: Risk Mitigation Planning And Working With Buyers Webinar Series

Arielle Feger
The SFA if offering two free Ask the Experts webinar series, taking place weekly on Tuesdays and Thursdays, to help members through the impact of the coronavirus pandemic. 

The Business Continuity and Risk Mitigation Planning series features subject matter experts on topics including government aid programs, legal matters, finance, insurance, crisis communications, and more. The Working with Buyers: Rise to the COVID-19 Challenge series gives retailer perspective on current conditions as buyers discuss the challenges in supply chains and stores, including merchandising, in-store activities, employees, and more. Each webinar is recorded and downloadable in the Learning Center.

Here is a recap of the latest webinars in each of the series:

In Tips for Makers During Challenging Times, Dwight Richmond, director of center store, merchandising at The Fresh Market, gave food makers advice about working with retailers in the current business landscape. Richmond’s tips included prioritizing communication, using this time to really understand the supply chain, and remembering that the industry will eventually recover.

Mark Brandau and Susan Cohen from Datassential led the session, Habits Die Hard: Pent-Up Demand for Food Experiences in the COVID-19 Crisis, sharing insights into consumer trends and what may happen when social distancing guidelines are lifted. One key insight they shared was that customers aren’t looking to shake up their routines, but instead are seeking out comfort foods and old favorites. In addition, Datassential believes that sanitary habits like handwashing and disinfecting more frequently will become part of daily life long past when social distancing has been lifted.

In Communications During a Crisis, Ed Tagliaferri, executive vice president at public relations and marketing firm DKC, outlined the three most important elements of communication: honesty, empathy, and authenticity.

Peter Picetti, senior vice president of Heffernan Insurance Brokers, hosted Insurance Considerations Related to the Pandemic, sharing a few examples of coverage for which companies may want to consider filing a claim, including property insurance, general liability insurance, and product recall insurance.

In the wake of COVID-19, retailers like DiBruno Bros. in Philadelphia have had to remain flexible and pivot their business strategy to fit customer needs. In Supply Chain, Staffing and Customer Challenges, Emilio Mignucci, VP of culinary pioneering at DiBruno Bros., gave his perspective on retail and online sales, supply and importing issues, managing staff during a crisis, and how his customers are buying right now.

In Community and Opportunity During a Crisis, Stephen Corradini, chief merchandising and marketing officer for Kings Food Markets and Balducci’s Food Lover’s Market, shared how his stores are fostering the spirit of community and changing how they do business during COVID-19. He discussed finding new suppliers and trying new ways of doing business, including concierge, curbside, and prepack, that will change the grocery business long-term.

Upcoming webinars include Stay Open, Stay Safe: Ensuring Safety in Challenging Times with Paul Medeiros, NSF International; Manage Your Financial Health Through the Crisis with Greg Wank, leader of Anchin’s Food and Beverage Group; and Selling Good Food Right Now with Ari Weinzweig of Zingermans.

New topics are added each week. Visit to learn more and to download recorded webinars.
Posted by Arielle Feger on May 5, 2020 9:30 AM America/New_York