Walmart’s plans to buy vegetables and fruits locally

A Wall Street Journal article (August 1, 2011) describes plans by Walmart to double its local purchase of fruits and vegetables by 2015 – with local defined as purchases from the state the store is located.   Thus Walmart buys jalapeno pepper from 30 states while about 10 years ago Florida provided most of the product.  The higher local prices are compensated by avoided transportation costs and is also in line with locavore movements.   But growing in different climates requires use of pesticides to maintain quality.  Local farners get volume commitments that makes their business viable.  But is Walmart’s decision driven by a response to consumer needs or a cost reduction strategy or both ? Is a local procurement level of 9 % for perishables by 2015 a significant local push or a marketing tool for Walmart ? Do you expect greater product variety – like heirloom tomatoes – as a response to such a local procurement strategy ?

About aviyer2010

Professor
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