Riverina Fresh explains its revamped sales strategy

Riverina Fresh

Riverina Fresh takes BeanScene through its revamped sales strategy, and how the company is looking to be more direct with its customers.

Businesses partnering with dairy manufacturer Riverina Fresh may have noticed recent changes to its sales team. As the company celebrates its centenary year, it is strategically setting the stage for the next century.

Central to this strategy is an emphasis on its new sales approach, made possible by the expansion of its vertically integrated food service distribution model. With nearly 80 per cent of its distribution in Sydney and Melbourne now handled in-house, Riverina Fresh has experienced a substantial increase in direct relationships.

“We’re now much closer to our customers and their day-to-day experiences, expanding the scope of our team’s responsibilities,” says Riverina Fresh General Manager of Sales and Distribution Asher Davies. He says this has resulted in a significant increase in the supply of Riverina Fresh dairy and food service products in the café and restaurant sector.

Leading this new strategy is Luke Hobbs, who assumed the role of Head of Sales at Riverina Fresh earlier this year. With over two decades of experience in the beverage industry, Luke is excited about contributing to an Australian-owned company with such a rich heritage. Luke’s focus lies in investing in people and building a robust team.

“We now have a team with extensive experience across the dairy service, food service, and coffee sectors,” Luke says.

With a strong emphasis on cultivating enduring, long-term relationships, the sales team is focused on exploring opportunities to add value to the needs of its customers. Asher says the current sales environment underscores the importance of regular dialogue with customers.

“We interact with our customers frequently, so we truly understand their needs,” says Luke. “Our efficient cold supply chain and a product portfolio of almost 400 products enable us to continually devise more cost-effective and consistent approaches to our food service offerings.”

One facet of the sales strategy that remains is Riverina Fresh’s commitment to the specialty coffee sector. For over a decade, the company has continuously contributed to the growth of coffee culture across Australia.

This association with the specialty coffee market provides Riverina Fresh valuable insights into emerging café trends in milk and food service products. This allows the company to collaborate with coffee roasters to match milk products for different roasts and coffee styles, while adding value with a targeted foodservice offering.

To sustain and expand engagement with its customer base, Riverina Fresh remains dedicated to supporting community and industry events aligned with its values and overarching strategy. This includes the Melbourne International Coffee Expo (MICE), a key industry event Riverina Fresh proudly supports.

“The recent MICE event in August provided the Sydney and Melbourne teams with an ideal opportunity to connect directly with all our key partners and customers,” says Luke, who has been integrating Riverina Fresh’s sales teams to foster collaboration and mutual support across the business.

In addition to offering premium milk products and food services, Riverina Fresh’s local ownership and regional base are commonly cited as reasons for choosing their products.

With its head office in the heart of the Riverina at Wagga Wagga, Luke says he and his regional sales team are ideally positioned to promote their love of coffee to regional centres.

“Everyone in the Riverina has grown up drinking Riverina Fresh milk, and now they are realising that it pairs perfectly with locally roasted coffee,” says Asher.

Riverina Fresh is also an active supporter of several regional community organisations and events, including the Riverina Australian Football and Netball Leagues, and annual Wagga Show.

“At each of these events, we look to support coffee vans serving locally roasted coffee with Riverina Fresh milk, produced right here at our factory in Wagga,” says Luke.

As Riverina Fresh celebrates its 100th year, the company remains dedicated to its customers, its regional roots, and providing premium dairy products and exceptional service – now, and into the next century.

For more information, visit www.riverinafresh.com.au

This article appears in the October 2023 edition of BeanScene. Subscribe HERE.

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