Produce Distribution Business Development Manager

Position Type: Other Staff
Apply By: September 3, 2018
Posted: August 6, 2018 - 5:47 pm EDT
Organization Type: Co-op Service Organization
Organization: National Co+op Grocers
Organization Location: St. Paul, Minnesota
Organization Website: National Co+op Grocers
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Attention Produce buyers, sellers and distribution experts!  Do you enjoy establishing new business relationships? Do you thrive on designing and implementing solutions to complex challenges? Would you like to apply your Produce buying and selling experience and relationship management skills in support of socially responsible, independent, and community-owned grocery stores?

National Co+op Grocers (NCG) is a member-owned business service cooperative providing a variety of services to over 200 retail food co-op outlets in 37 states. NCG helps unify food co-ops in order to optimize operational, merchandising and marketing resources, strengthen purchasing power, and ultimately offer more value to food co-op shoppers everywhere. NCG provides a fast-paced, dynamic work environment. We are a group of passionate, intelligent, and disciplined people working to improve the food supply and grow the cooperative economy. NCG is well suited for talented individuals seeking to make a difference in our world through their work.

We are seeking a full-time business development manager to establish and manage produce distribution relationships and programs designed to support the success of NCG retail food co-ops. This position delivers value to our member retailers through produce distribution programs that:

  • provide strategic and proactive supply chain management
  • improve supplier service levels
  • lower or contain costs, strengthen competitive positioning and grow sales
  • enhance access to high-quality produce and value-added items
  • increase social and environmental sustainability
  • create operational efficiencies that reduce labor at retail
  • grow industry influence

This is an ideal position for produce distribution experts interested in having a direct impact on the success of food co-ops, their suppliers, and their communities. This position will be based in NCG’s St. Paul, MN office, and requires up to 30% business travel. Relocation assistance is available for this opportunity!

Primary Responsibilities:

  • Formation of NCG’s national and regional produce distribution strategy and network of distributors
  • Evaluation of potential distribution partners’ alignment with a triple bottom line philosophy and comprehensive value orientation
  • Develop, implement and manage produce distribution programs
  • Contract negotiations and management
  • Management of complex, large-scale business relationships and programs
  • Identification of trending deficiencies and ability to design system-based solutions to diminish the root cause


  • Collaborative and highly adaptable
  • Strong commitment to the success of values-driven community owned food co-ops
  • Orientation toward building long-term, mutually beneficial relationships with NCG’s partners
  • Minimum of 5 years’ experience in produce distribution and or high-volume produce procurement
  • Minimum of 3 years’ experience in supplier/vendor relationship management
  • Experience in developing relationships and contracts with suppliers, service-providers, and strategic partners
  • Knowledge of purchasing/negotiating concepts and procedures
  • Cultural sensitivities and acceptance of working with a diverse spectrum of prospective partners
  • Excellent interpersonal, verbal and written communication skills
  • Demonstrated ability to develop proposals and use data and anecdotal information to make recommendations
  • Demonstrated ability to manage projects and work with teams and small groups
  • Demonstrated ability to exercise independent judgment and to work independently
  • Strong organizational and critical thinking skills
  • Computer literacy including proficiency in Word, Excel, and Outlook
  • Familiarity with natural and organic foods and produce industry trends
  • Understanding of natural foods cooperatives and retail grocery preferred
  • Produce retailing experience a plus

Our team members are our most-valued asset; we offer a generous salary and benefits package including four weeks paid time off at hire, medical, dental, vision, company paid Life/ Disability/ Long Term Care insurance, HSA/FSA with company contribution, a matching 401K plan with profit sharing and much more. 

Conveniently located between St. Paul and Minneapolis
2610 University Ave W, Suite 150 | St. Paul, MN 55114
Free Parking | Front Door Light Rail Station (Westgate - Green Line)

About NCG:
National Co+op Grocers (NCG), founded in 1999, is a business services cooperative for retail food co-ops located throughout the United States. We represent 145 food co-ops operating over 200 stores in 37 states with combined annual sales over $2.1 billion and over 1.3 million consumer-owners. NCG helps unify natural food co-ops in order to optimize operational, merchandising and marketing resources, strengthen purchasing power, and ultimately offer more value to natural food co-op owners and shoppers everywhere. By providing a variety of purchasing, management, development, marketing and other services, our co-ops are able to gain many of the advantages large grocery chains enjoy, while still reflecting the unique qualities of their local communities. For a map of NCG member and associate co-ops, visit our Find-a-Co-op page. To learn more about co-ops, visit

Apply By:  September 3, 2018