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AOP PodcastDial P for Procurement

Taking a Thoughtful Approach to Relentless Improvement Featuring Tom Burke with ButcherBox

By September 15, 2022May 31st, 2023No Comments

Although the most memorable shortage of 2020 was toilet paper, there was a span of time in the spring and early summer when the food supply chain was under strain as well. Concerned about lockdowns and being able to feed their families, people bought huge quantities of groceries and stocked up their homes.

This kicked off a strong bullwhip effect, clearing supermarket shelves and creating shortages that reverberated through the supply chain to wholesalers and distributors.

ButcherBox is a Boston-based meat subscription service that delivers high quality meat and seafood directly to consumers’ homes. Demand for their services skyrocketed overnight, with thousands of people hitting their website hourly at the peak. As a self-described “member obsessed” team, ButcherBox had some important decisions to make. How fast could they expand? How would they protect their existing customer experience? How many people could they help while preserving their quality standards.

Tom Burke is the Chief Operating Officer at ButcherBox. He is responsible for technology, people ops, customer support, and finance. In this Dial P for Procurement video interview, he joins host Kelly Barner to talk about the choices he and his team had to make during the pandemic, what they have seen in terms of demand since, and what is on the horizon for their mission-driven company.

  • What went into the decision to start waitlisting new customers in March of 2020, and how ButcherBox managed its growth during the surge
  • How innovating to create fully recyclable packaging and making the strategic decision to purchase their own dry ice facility align with their value proposition and corporate culture
  • What they have learned about the connections between sourcing high quality protein, supporting the farming community, and making lasting improvements to the environment
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