How To Private Label

Private Label Pooki’s Mahi Products & New Product Launches

Pooki’s Mahi insight to “How to Private Label” will guide customers on factors to consider and lead times for the components. Pooki’s Mahi’s guide is focused on operations excellence - process to produce a FG-Buy (Finished Good Buy) product in an existing sales channel.

Summary:  The purpose of our “How to Private Label” is a guide for new customers and focused on private labelling Pooki’s Mahi Kona coffee pods and custom tea flavors. Pooki’s Mahi has a detailed strategy and product launch plan for new product launches.  The “How To Private Label” guide will focus on the list the required BOM (Bill of Material) items, factors to consider before uploading the BOM components to Pooki’s Mahi private label platform.
ground rules ensures consistent execution from supply chain and go to market launch teams.

This guide does not cover:

  • Strategy - What channels to sell private label products
  • Marketing components - design, design elements, branding colors, marketing assets or non-operational BOM components
  • Digital marketing - social media, brand influencers, celebrities, brand management, marcom activites


Step 1:  Private Label Product components

There are two main sales channels:  B2B, B2C.  The components required to private label a product on any B2C or B2B sales channel is the same. The delivery of the final private label product to the end customer determines the product material.  The difference in product materials will either protect or destroy the product.
Evaluate the required BOM components before starting the design process or uploading the production ready BOM components to Pooki’s Mahi private label platform.  

Materials required to private label products:

  1. Packaging:  Shelf Ready (SR) or Ecommerce ready
  2. Film design covering the front  and back of the individually wrapped pods
  3. Scan ready UPC number
  4. Scan ready UPC labels with the required product information (outside the packaging)
  5. SKU # (Stock Keeping Unit)
  6. Product Number (if not coded into the SKU)
  7. Pooki’s Mahi private label 100% Kona coffee
  8. Pooki’s Mahi private label custom tea flavor(s) blends
  9. Ingredients
  10. Instructions on using the product
  11. Address of the private label manufacturer
  12. Nutrition information
  13. Best Used By Date / LOT date code
  14. Optional:  RFID tags to track shipments


Part I:  Packaging: Shelf Ready (SR) or ecommerce approved
Review the sales volume by channel and standardize on packaging.  Long term sourcing and manufacturing multiple different packaging will be very costly.  Packaging for a B2C channel for a retailer (products displayed/sold on the shelf) is extremely cheap.  Packaging for a B2C channel for an online retailer (products displayed/sold online) can be very expensive.  

Shelf Ready Packaging
Packaging destined to be on a retail shelf is flimpsy, thinner and subject to shipping damage.  A common number of coffee pods in 1 shelf ready packaging is 7, 10, or 12. Stick packs tend to pack in 10 or 12.  Any number larger than 12 is packaged in a standup pouch.  For example, 24 or 50+ count detergent pods are packaged in a standup pouch or a plastic tub.

Shelf ready packaging is ideal for products sold in a grocery store, drugstore or convenience store.

Ecommece Ready
Ecommerce ready packaging means “product is in an “easy-to-open packaging box.” Ecommerce ready packaging will protect the product from shipping damages and dunnage. Material used for packaging is thicker in a c-flute or indestructo mailer version.  Private label customers can design the box to fit an infinite number of Kona coffee pods in the box. However, a large box to package a large amount of Kona coffee pods units must undergo through several packaging drop tests.

Ecommerce ready packaging is ideal for products sold online or if shipped via drop shipping.

Packaging questions to consider:

  1. Where is the private label product sold?  
  2. If the private label product is shipped to the retailer then how will you protect packaging during (shipping) transit (from private label manufacturer to final destination)?
  3. If the private label product is sold online then is the customer clear on the product contents?


Part II:  Product Design - Film, Ingredients, UPC number, Instructions, Private Label Manufacturer, Nutrition Information, Best Used By Date / LOT Date Code
Designing Pooki’s Mahi private label coffee pods or private label tea is straight forward. Pooki’s Mahi provides a template for the film along with the guidelines.  To be compliant Pooki’s Mahi private label Kona coffee pods must have the following designed onto the film:
  1. Brand name
  2. Name of Pooki’s Mahi private label coffee like “100% Kona coffee,” “100% Kona coffee Estate Extra Fancy” or “100% Kona Peaberry coffee”
  3. UPC Number - Products sold in a convenience store or repackaged will need this as part of the master BOM.
  4. Instructions - How should the customer brew Kona coffee pods?
  5. Private Label Manufacturer’s Name:  Manufactured/Distributed By Pooki’s Mahi, 548 Market St. #60634, San Francisco, CA 94104-5401
  6. Nutrition Information
  7. Best Used By Date / LOT Date Code are imprinted on the pouch at the time of manufacturing production.  It is usually imprinted on the back of the film and at the top left hand corner.
Product Design questions:
  1. Do you have a UPC prefix certificate?
  2. Do you have a UPC number assigned to a SKU and the packaging size?
  3. If you’re skipping instructions, then how does the customer brew the Kona coffee pod or tea pod?
  4. How will customers contact you if there are issues?  


The seven items are the required product information items. Pooki’s mahi suggests designing additional brand specific CTAs (Call To Action) onto the package.  Make it clear to customers options to engage with the brand.

Part III: UPC numbers
Scan ready UPC numbers are required regardless if the product is sold online (ecommerce) or on a retail shelf.  UPC numbers should be designed in an obvious spot on the packaging. Make sure to use the recommended size. Assign UPC numbers to the smallest sellable unit and then to packages, bundles and pallets.
Assigning UPC numbers to:

  1. Smallest unit that will be sold.  If it is 1 Kona coffee pod, then assign 1 UPC number to this.
  2. 1 sellable retail package
  3. 1 sellable bundle
  4. 1 sellable pallet


Part IV:  SKU, Fulfillment SKU numbers
A SKU (Stock Keeping Unit) tracks products in addition to UPCs.  It is easier to interpret a SKU vs. a list of UPCs. Create a SKU taxonomy that is easily understood by every cross functional team member.  For example, if accounting has an issue with an order, then accounting can quickly resolve the issue by looking at the SKU.  Keep it short and simple.

Design SKU numbers:

  1. Near the UPC label - customers can reference the SKU and UPC if there are any issues.
  2. Add a fulfillment SKU near the UPC if it is different.  This applies to third party fulfillment companies.
  3. Include a product identifier like a product family name, number for quantities within the SKU number.  If a product identifier is not possible then design a product number close to the UPC and SKU number.


Pooki’s Mahi executive team has designs systems that power today’s top Fortune 50 companies.  Startups or new companies unfamiliar with creating a baseline to manage SKUs through a SKU taxonomy or lack discipline in designing the basic product information into the product will run into an inventory management issue. Managing inventory becomes a bigger problem when using an enterprise inventory management system to manage a growing business.

Pooki’s Mahi vetted 50+ private label manufacturers for our prized Kona coffee pods, private label teas, private label Kona coffee pods and custom promotional products. None of the companies provided a system architecture map or explain the end-to-end operations process.  Private label manufacturers in the food industry are in “dinosaur” times and are very slow to adapt to technologies commonly used by the high tech industry.  

Pooki’s Mahi requires a system architecture map.  

Common issues with private label customers:

  1. Lack of understanding HOW to create a SKU taxonomy.
  2. Lack of understanding technology to manage the business - API, standard ERP, MRP, WMS, PLM
  3. Lack of understanding the difference between private label products to sell vs. custom promotional products as marketing gifts
  4. Inflexible schedules - products produced ready to ship without approvals in 3 days.
  5. Lack of a UPC certificate(s)
  6. Lack of an established sales channel - marketplaces doesn’t all products.
  7. Extremely poor website design leading to sub-par customer experiences
  8. Missing a product designer to design product labels, product packaging for the Kona coffee pod or tea pods
  9. Expecting Pooki’s Mahi to design labels, coffee pod wrapper and outside box packaging for free. Nothing is free. Pooki’s Mahi adds a touch cost to anything that requires approval.
  10. Lack of understanding of WHAT it takes to launch new products and HOW to private label coffee pods or custom tea flavored pods for sustained success.
  11. Cyber-criminal activities - engaging in aggressive, negative product review campaigns
  12. Cyber-bullying activities with the intent to kill Pooki’s Mahi business



Following “How To Private Label” Guide For Successful Product Launches
Following Pooki’s Mahi “How to Private Label” Guide facilitates successful new product launches. Customers fall into two categories when launching new products:

 

  • Experienced Customers:  Successfully launched new products in the past. Newly launched products are sold in the market today.  Understand the micro-details on HOW to private label product including WHICH materials are required.
  • Inexperienced Customers:  New founder or individual contributor that never launched a product with a strong brand or market recognition. Needs guidance to HOW to private label products; lack of understanding the product requirements and might “short cut” product requirements to launch a product.

    Customers don’t need to follow our “How To Private Label” Guidelines.  If Pooki’s Mahi private label products (100% Kona coffee pods or custom tea flavored pods) for customers, then the process requires customers to provide the required materials.  The “How To Private Label” Guidelines ensures customers have the required information; it shortens the time to launch new products.

    How to private label Pooki’s Mahi Kona coffee pods, custom tea flavors


    Step 2:  Pooki’s Mahi Private Label Manufacturing:

    Pooki’s Mahi will start the BOM (Bill of Materials) review after receiving all required materials.  

    Pooki’s Mahi strict requirements for private label products ensures the quoted lead time of 4-6 weeks is consistently met.  Customers that upload uncompleted BOM materials (half-baked, never completed) will never meet the target 4-6 weeks lead time.

    Customers should upload production ready BOM materials.  

    Pooki’s Mahi will provide product label design templates, film packaging design templates and will assist with ensuring the required materials are production ready.

    Artwork Specs - Pooki’s Mahi Film Material
    Any modifications or corrections made after the customer receives an .pdf artwork will result in extra charges. It will also delay manufacturing the film.
    Artwork Checklist:

      • Spell check the copy on the film
      • Outline fonts
      • Embed images
      • Convert text to outlines
      • Convert registration / rich blacks to CMYK (where K = 100%)
      • Convert RGB to CMYK color profile
      • Convert spot colors to process
      • Do not  include trim/crop marks or registration marks in the press ready files.
      • Upload Adobe Acrobat Document (.pdf) (preferred) or Adobe Illustrator (.ai)

    Pooki’s Mahi’s packaging design film template has guidelines.  Extend the artwork beyond the artboard trim size at least 0.125”.

    Artwork Rejection:

    Pooki's Mahi will reject artwork if the following issues are found:

    1. File type is not .pdf or .ai.  
    2. Text is not outlined
    3. Registration color used 
    4. RGB color used
    5. Spot colors used

    Pooki's Mahi is not responsible for fixing artwork.  Pooki's Mahi will fix, update artwork if the customer purchased design services.

     

    Pooki’s Mahi Private Label Product Specs
    Pooki’s Mahi continuously measures existing suppliers and vets new vendors or suppliers.  We strive to provide the highest quality product components.  A good test is Pooki’s Mahi Founder/CEO.  If the supplier does not pass the initial product review during the RFI phase, then Pooki’s Mahi RFI team will never extend an invite into Pooki’s Mahi supply chain.


    Pooki’s Mahi is not interested in allowing customers to bring in their own materials into Pooki’s Mahi’s efficient supply chain. The exception is the outside box packaging.
    Pooki’s Mahi specializes in private label manufacturing individually wrapped sustainable pods that work in single serve coffee makers.  Visit Pooki’s Mahi Tea / Coffee Pods Pricing page for product specs on tea / coffee pods, viewable pod’s lid, and film wrapper material.

    Pooki’s Mahi provides a manufacturing BOM spec.  The BOM spec includes:

    1. Handling / Packing of the individual coffee pods or custom tea blends
    2. Placement location of the outside UPC label
    3. Placement location of marketing assets
    4. Ship To location


    Customer Success:  Pooki’s Mahi  Private Label Customers

    Customers come to Pooki’s Mahi to manufacture luxury private label 100% Kona coffee pods, or single serve custom tea blends as products to sell as their own private label brand. Pooki’s Mahi places a higher value on consistent execution and assisting private label customers sell through their private label products online.  

    Pooki’s Mahi is known for:

    1. High customer value
    2. Private labeling award-winning quality products
    3. Consistent new product launches
    4. Efficient supply chain with attention to the fine details.
    5. WYSWYG - What You See What You Get - Honest, direct communication to the true cost from a private label manufacturer’s point of view.


    Sales operations is handled via Pooki’s Mahi Customer Success Center.  Order information, updates to existing/new orders such as delivery times and opportunities to show case the new private label Kona coffee pods or single serve custom teas are assigned a case number.  A Pooki’s Mahi Customer Success team member and/or executive will monitor and update the customer.

    Pooki’s Mahi transportation leads will schedule the pick up and drop off dates for the shipment.  Free shipping to the Lower 48 USA states regardless of size. Estimate 2-5 business days to receive the product. Transportation team can expedite an LTL/TL order at an additional expense.

    Pooki’s Mahi rolls out the red carpet for repeat customers.


    Pooki’s Mahi Commitment to Private Label Customers
    Pooki’s Mahi’s private label and custom promotional products are hosted on a separate platform.  Accounts are required to check out.  Private label accounts will not work on PookisMahi.com.

    Pooki’s Mahi’s private label and custom promotional products platform is designed for customers who are self-sufficient and do not require a lot of guidance.  Private label customers know what they want.  

    What Pooki’s Mahi will do for private label customers:

    1. A Pooki’s Mahi customer success team member will reach out to the customer.
    2. Customer will receive a product mock up of the pouch using the images uploaded by the customer.
    3. Reconfirmation of the order for 100% Kona coffee pods or custom tea blends.
    4. Estimated delivery updates
    5. Ensure private label orders are manufactured according to spec and passes our stringent FAI process.
    6. Provide 1 box (shelf ready box) as a retail sample to the Lower 48 USA states.  Customers must pay for shipping additional samples.  
    7. Assist custom promotional products customers with design tweeks.

    What Pooki’s Mahi will NOT do for private label customers:
    1. Sales calls - Pooki's Mahi will not call customers to sell private label Kona coffee pods, private label tea blends, custom design services or custom promotional products. 
    2. Call customers - Pooki’s Mahi has a Zero Tolerance Policy against telemarketers.  Pooki’s Mahi interprets calling a customer without an active (paid) order to sell or upsell as telemarketing.
    3. Design private label coffee pods or private label tea flavors. Customers need to purchase design services (first).

    Pooki's Mahi aims to resolve customer issues - not create new challenges due to aggressive phone calls or providing services outside what the customer paid for.  Customers must e-sign a Private Label Manufacturer's Agreement (also known as a Master Seller Agreement).


    Private Label Resources:
    Visit the resource links to find out more background on private label or to start designing private label coffee, private label Kona coffee pods, or custom Kona coffee pods.  Private label single serve custom tea blends will be available to order in 2017.
    Pooki’s Mahi will continue to update the “How To Private Label” Guide to assist new customers.


    Resource Links:

    1. Kona Coffee Pods:  Custom Promotional Products
    2. Private Label Kona Coffee Pods
    3. Private Label Coffee - BYOC (Bring Your Own Coffee)
    4. Pooki’s Mahi Customer Success Center
    5. Private Label Pods Pricing



    Pooki’s Mahi™, The PMO Practice™, and Matcha Matcha Man™ are trademarks of Pooki’s Mahi.  New Product Launch introductions, Go To Market Planning and supply chain frameworks are protected under VA 1-294-170.   


    About Pooki’s Mahi:
    Pooki’s Mahi™ is a Silicon Valley-based private label coffee pods and custom promotional products manufacturer offering Hawaiian 100% Kona coffee and award-winning private label teas in sustainable single serve cups. Private label brands partner with Pooki’s Mahi for the efficient supply chain, go to market launch and new product introduction expertise. Since its online launch in 2013, Pooki’s Mahi products have been a favorite of customers, charities, celebrities and athletes and have been featured at red carpet events including Celebrity Gift Suites and athletes and seen on several television shows.  Pooki’s Mahi’s mission is to revolutionize the supply chain ecosystem to make it efficient by using technology in bringing the highest quality Kona coffees into the market in a sustainable, compostable cup. Hawaiian coffees are harvested/roasted in Hawaii, single serve cup manufactured in US and distributed to several fulfillment centers in the US.

    For more information on Pooki’s Mahi custom private label coffee, pods pricing, single serve tea visit Pooki's Mahi Private Label & Custom Promotional Products site. Follow Pooki’s Mahi on Instagram, Facebook, or Twitter to keep up with news insights to launching custom promotional products. Pooki’s Mahi has a zero tolerance for firms engaged in cyber-bullying, cyber-criminal, slander, negative reviews, or cultural discrimination.  A single serve coffee maker of white / black cups and aloha islands competitors cyber-bullied Pooki’s Mahi Founder/CEO since 2014. The relentless negative campaigns, slander and IP bullying resulted in irreparable harm.  Once a cyber-bully, always a bully.



    Contact Information
    Pooki’s Mahi                                                                                         
    Support(at)pookismahi(dot)com

     


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