Imagine if today’s biggest industries had never found an efficient and effective way to connect the customer with the seller. What if telecommunications providers didn’t have smartphone manufacturers to provide instant connectability in the palm of our hands? What if homeowners didn’t have access to real-estate agents to market, stage and sell their home? What powers these behaviors in today’s top-performing sectors? The answer is the middle market.

When an industry’s marketplace doesn’t operate efficiently on its own, middle-market experts swoop in to help firms locate valuable sales channels for their products. For the protein industry, the middle market takes the form of traders, a group created out of market necessity because of inefficiencies in how meat was transacted.

Today, the importance of picking the right protein trader is essential because of a mix of logistics challenges, credit and financing hurdles, and lack of visibility into trading practices. 

Fortunately, we’re at a tipping point in how the protein industry operates due to changes in the market landscape and technological advances. Savvy traders are capitalizing on this new world order and rooting out longstanding inefficiencies that continually drive up prices and convolute inventory management.

How do you choose an ideal trading partner? Here are three key indicators to identify a middle-market partner for your business.


Brandish technology for better decision-making

As legacy industries everywhere become more automated, it is crucial that trader-level knowledge remain core in how our industry operates. Traders who leverage a technological edge — sometimes even as basic as prioritizing email — have a leg up on competition simply by streamlining communications and productivity.

Traders who track market trends and evaluate logistics opportunities significantly narrow decision uncertainty on whether to buy or sell. Although technology adoption has been slow to take hold, more traders are expected to leverage analytics tools as a means of working smarter, not harder, and making better decisions with the help of unified and real-time market data.


Deliver and demand quality service done well

Great traders find responsive buyers dedicated to uncovering the best opportunities for your inventory. They’ve become experts in getting gridlocked products sold and navigating the various protein market pathways, so you’re not left holding on to depreciating inventory.

They also actively seek out respectful behavior from their own partners. Qualities such as clear communication, timely execution of orders and prompt payment are non-negotiables. For that reason, communicative traders become indispensable to your business, freeing you to focus on operations, not sales.


Expand market opportunities as super traders

Although the majority of traders perform steadily and predictably, there is a growing opportunity to work alongside super traders, partners who develop new channels for your products and actively expand your reach.

Building more visibility for your products may be the single most important attribute of any great trader. This growth mindset comes through in the procurement process, allowing these super traders to discover new customer segments and uses for your inventory.  NP