One of the reasons maintaining trusted relationships is so important to the seafood industry is the many disreputable parties who find a way into the seafood supply chain, looking for ways to game the system. Whether it’s IUU fishing, mislabeling, failure to deliver product or failure to pay, these actors work to their advantage and to the detriment of other industry participants. But the chances to be gamed don’t stop at these obvious factors.
There are so many steps in the seafood supply chain, that it’s difficult to preserve margin at each step in the process. Anything that disrupts seller-buyer dynamics is a threat. We all use our relationships and history to know who our trusted buyers and sellers are, versus others who might step in ahead or behind us in the supply chain but not add value. But are there ways a predatory party could lurk in and around your transaction process, undetected?
An important consideration here becomes the independence of your e-commerce platform. When choosing a platform and marketplace for negotiating wholesale seafood transactions, it’s critical to look beyond what the platform offers and who the trading counterparties are, to also understand who is backing the platform itself. Is the platform backed by a broker or seafood company you compete with or transact with? If so, think about the kind of information about your business that company could have access to – who you do business with, what you have available to buy or sell, the prices you’re getting, and more.
Marketplace platforms which aren’t independent are a perfect case of the fox guarding the henhouse… or in this case, guarding your fish.
For the record – Dealboard is an electronic seafood marketplace independent of any broker or competing seafood companies. We do not take a position in any transaction.
As a stand-alone company not affiliated with any broker or competing seafood company, using Dealboard is a way to preserve your business model, your proprietary information, your trusted relationships and your margin.