As a young man growing up in Sandusky, Ohio, Ryan Yost literally learned early on that life and business can be a roller coaster. The Ohio city is renowned for Cedar Point Amusement Park, famous throughout the Midwest for its’ 17 roller coasters.
Now in his role of guiding the fortunes of the nation’s leading label producer Avery Dennison’s restaurant and food service initiatives, Yost can’t help but reflect on the irony that the COVID-19 challenge has brought to his company’s custom base.
The Vice President and General Manager, Printer Solutions Division (PSD) for Avery Dennison explained: “My strength has always been my problem-solving abilities,” Yost said. “I have always had a feel for fixing problems by creating streamlined processes and embracing technology that could help make that a reality.”
For the past 19 years as Yost has come through the ranks at the Ohio based Fortune 500 company, he has worked in every aspect of the Avery Dennison operation. “What makes hospitality so challenging and interesting is that you are working through an extensive supply chain that moves from the farmer through distribution. Then to the restaurant and finally to their dining patron,” Yost explained.
“We are convinced that the driving force behind getting packaging right is the ability to get as much information on the package as possible,” Yost said. “With that comes the ability to control food safety. In addition, in today’s takeout and delivery environment a high-quality label becomes insurance against tampering with the food.”
In today’s competitive marketplace, a commitment to Avery Dennison labels and printers generates a very different type of ROI, Yost explained.
“Today’s customer is on the web constantly looking at reviews of restaurants. With our line, the operator’s online reviews will often reflect both the taste of the food and the commitment to prepare and transport it in the highest quality packaging,” he said.
In addition, with many operating customers utilizing GrubHub, Postmates and Uber Eats, takeout and delivery has become an expensive proposition. Avery Dennison’s suite of solutions enables the operator to protect the 10 to 15 points of margin that come with an efficient delivery reprogram. Given the complexities and the added importance of each takeout and delivery order during the COVID-19 challenge, Avery Dennison provides the technical backup required to minimize or eliminate downtime. “We offer some 50 techs in the field as well as a help desk that is on call to provide immediate troubleshooting and problem solving,” Yost added.
Avery Dennison has made the commitment to lead the industry in an understanding the dynamics of food safety. “We have found that 80% to 90% of contaminants in food safety are either because you haven’t managed temperature right or you’re not managing hand washing correctly. So, we have created and introduced a full line of solutions that are focused on those two key concerns,” Yost added. “To us, it’s all about automating food safety and inventory practices so that the operator and their team can focus on servicing the customer.”
Avery Dennison’s expanding suite of software and hardware solutions is built on scalable technology that is designed to meet the unique challenges and ever-changing needs of food establishments. Connecting front-of-the-house and back-of-the-house operations, Avery Dennison capabilities utilize data to connect all the links of the food supply chain.
To many the name Avery Dennison is synonymous with the highest quality labels. But in reality, Yost and his team play a key role as an upfront and ongoing consultative partner to food establishments with their FreshTrax Analysis, Freshmarx Systems Integration, Freshmarx RFID Design and Deployment, and Freshmarx Service and Support. Through this supportive step-by-step program, Avery Dennison experts review existing operations and identify process improvements to ensure greater efficiency, food safety and reduce costs. An assigned systems integration team sees Freshmarx rollout through and ongoing field support is offered as a service, with local reps available nationwide.
The centerpiece of the Avery Dennison program is the Avery Dennison Freshmarx Central System that utilizes an Android OS data management system and printer to enable one of a kind applications and features within the Freshmarx ecosystem of solutions. At the top of Freshmarx’s Connected Kitchen initiative is Freshmarx Prep. This is a proprietary intuitive food service software application designed for food labeling, date coding, nutritional calculations, employee training and food donation and waste tracking. Informed by Freshmarx Edit, ingredients, menus and recipes are all brand-customized and configurable so updates are centralized and easily and securely pushed across restaurant locations and accessible from Freshmarx 9417+, Freshmarx Tablet and Freshmarx Central Systems.
Freshmarx Delivery is a game changer in the food delivery business where customers expect fresh food delivered quickly and accurately according to their order. Freshmarx Delivery enables brand-specific labeling, complete with details such as date, time, order and order-personalization, along with nutritional, pricing and promotional content such as coupons. In addition to ensuring order accuracy, it’s tamper-evident to ensure food safety.
With so many restaurants focused on offering fare, Freshmarx Nutrition offers an “all-in-one” food and nutrition solution to replace hand-calculating and labeling ingredient and nutritional information for grab-and-go foods, which is cumbersome and can be error prone. Freshmarx Nutrition, supported through a partnership with ESHA’s Genesis R&D Food Formulation Software, calculates nutrition information for ingredients, recipes and menu items and imports the data straight to Freshmarx.
For many Metro New York restaurants, the connection with their communities is an essential component. Freshmarx Donation and Freshmarx Waste Tracker helps food establishments determine exactly how much food inventory is being lost by analyzing inventory data and ordering processes. This application allows for easy tracking using a weigh scale – along with labeling and logging – to measure and analyze food waste in order to reduce inventory costs and minimize waste by discarding less food, or by donating excess to City Harvest or Food Bank of New York City.
Many restaurants are bolstering their takeout and delivery operations with the convenience of the Freshmarx Tablet System that solves kitchen challenges related to food labeling, employee training, mobile printing and space constraints. In addition to Freshmarx Central and the 9417+, it can also combine the Avery Dennison 9485 portable printer with the Freshmarx Prep software application on an iPad.
Visionary restaurant operators see this time an opportunity to build a sustainable takeout and delivery program. “Avery Dennison Printer solutions can enable the savvy operator to create a program that will provide much needed cash flow today and a profitable resource when life returns to normal and patrons are back in your dining rooms,” Yost concluded.
Avery Dennison Printer Solutions manufactures the original Monarch® Handheld Labeler at its headquarters in Dayton, Ohio, and is a global leader within the food industry with its Freshmarx solutions. Additional information is available at www.freshmarx.com