Need for insight, sky-high customer demands and an organization that’s constantly growing are more than enough reasons to work with a strong ERP solution. But as a growers association, you're not going to get very far with a one-size-fits-all ERP. You are in a niche market, with very specific wishes and requirements. The needs of growers are of course paramount, but the increasingly stringent demands of retailers cannot be avoided. Let’s not forget: the customer is always right.
Fossa Eugenia has the answer: An IT partner who understands your business like the back of their hand, and a collaboration from an unexpected angle. Read on to learn how this growers association has been successful for years, while always looking to the future.
In 2011, Fossa Eugenia partnered with Schouw Informatisering, from Aptean. After a successful implementation, the company went on to use the ERP system Aptean Food & Beverage ERP Foodware 365 Edition for many years. But over time, Fossa’s requirements grew more complex, especially as retail became an increasingly important sales channel. In 2016, it was clear that the company was expanding so fast that they were outgrowing their current ERP solution. This was the perfect time to map out the current situation and start looking for a suitable system for the future. And again, they chose Schouw Informatisering, from Aptean without starting a further selection process. Why? Ton Holthuijsen, advisor at Fossa Eugenia explains: "We chose them again based on our experience years before. It was simply a great collaboration with a fine implementation project at the time. So we sat down together again." The re-implementation went "the Fossa way", as they like to say at Fossa. With a fast turnaround time, it was full speed ahead - with the help of hard work and intensive cooperation between the two parties.
An important part of Fossa's ERP system is the growers portal, indispensable for a growers association. When Fossa chose to reimplement Aptean Food & Beverage ERP, it was very important that it was built perfectly.
The portal is used for the weekly forecasts. The grower sees through the portal which products have been sold by Fossa, and which orders they have to make. For example, EDI orders placed by retailers are automatically assigned to the right grower locations. Through the portal, the grower immediately sees what needs to be delivered to whom and when. Customer-specific labels are printed locally by the grower via the Fossa ERP. Fossa Eugenia and growers association Kompany even joined forces in using the same growers portal. Why build it twice when you have the same goal? Since 2018, both organizations have been using the same software: one-size-fits-two.
Previously, Fossa worked with an external party for their portal, but they have now completely switched to the portal from Schouw Informatisering, from Aptean. They chose to do this because of the simplicity of having one supplier. For example, Fossa only has to talk to Aptean if they need any adjustments or have any questions. "Short lines of communication, that's what it's all about. The portal works as desired, but of course there is always room for improvement. The next step is, among other things, a quality project, so that growers can now state the quality of the product in the portal."
Years of collaboration between the project team of Fossa Eugenia and Aptean ensures a well-oiled machine. This is also thanks to the great match between the consultants at Aptean and the employees at Fossa. The consultants know Fossa’s business like the back of their hand. At Fossa, they also like pragmatic thinking. In the event of any problems, we immediately look for a suitable solution.
Fossa Eugenia, with its headquarters situated in Venlo, the Netherlands, is a growers association with 34 members. With an upward trend in both sales and growers as well as assortment, Fossa is clearly a fast-growing company. The growers organisation supplies to wholesalers, supermarkets and processors. Fossa is a flat organization, and believes in short lines of communication. This also means that for the most part, the products go directly from grower to customer, without any unnecessary extra stops. Fossa themselves put it nicely: “Fossa is a cooperative by and for growers who sustainably produce healthy fruit and vegetables year-round. It aims to collectively sell its products and assist customers to do so successfully, so that consumers can enjoy its healthy and high-quality products, in order to achieve a healthy return for its growers.”
With the addition of new members within sight, the ever-growing turnover, and the need of the end consumer for fresh, healthy food, the future certainly looks bright for Fossa. And what about the IT landscape? That’s solid as a rock.
Aptean is one of the world’s leading providers of industry-specific software. Our enterprise resource planning and supply chain solutions are uniquely designed to meet the needs of specialized manufacturers and distributors in over 20 industries, while our compliance solutions serve specific markets such as finance and life sciences. In total, Aptean’s solutions are used by over 6,000 customers around the world. With both cloud and on-premise deployment options, Aptean’s products, services and unmatched expertise help businesses of all sizes to scale and succeed. Aptean is headquartered in Alpharetta, Georgia and has offices in North America, Europe and Asia-Pacific. With the acquisition of Schouw Informatisering and LINKFRESH, Aptean is the worldwide market leader in the fresh produce industry.