GRAND RAPIDS, Mich. — Meijer announced Monday the return of its Lift Local Supplier Event, giving local businesses across the retailer’s six-state footprint the opportunity to virtually showcase their offerings to Meijer buyers and procurement teams.
“Our partnerships with vendors in our footprint allow us to directly impact our local economies,” said Peter Whitsett, Meijer executive vice president of Merchandising and Marketing. “By featuring local products, we’re able to support small businesses while providing our customers with a greater sense of community, offering items that resonate with their values and culture. This event helps us find those unique products and continue sourcing locally.”
The July 19-21 virtual event will focus on the following categories:
- Grocery, including fresh, deli and bakery
- Beauty and personal care
- Over-the-counter and wellness
Businesses that manufacture or grow retail-ready products in the states of Michigan, Illinois, Indiana, Kentucky, Ohio and Wisconsin can apply by May 20 for consideration here.
“After a successful first event, we’re excited to further grow our community of local business vendors,” said Jamie Akemann, group vice president of Global Sourcing, Indirect Procurement, Supplier Diversity and Product Quality at Meijer. “This isn’t just an opportunity for fully-developed brands, but a chance for us to build relationships with small, local businesses and invest in their long-term success.”
The summit follows the retailer’s third Supplier Diversity event in March, during which Meijer buyers and procurement teams met with more than 200 certified minority-, LGBTQ+-, woman-, veteran- and disability-owned businesses to diversify their vendor base and better serve their customers. These events are part of the retailer’s ongoing efforts to enhance the diversity of its business partners and amplify development in its communities.
Once event applications are submitted, Meijer teams will review and select the vendors they would like to meet and will be invited to a virtual or in-person meeting. Suppliers not chosen for the event will still be accessible through the RangeMe registration tools and may be reviewed by Meijer buyers again in the future as business needs change.
While they may not qualify for July’s event, local vendors with indirect services or products outside of the previously mentioned categories are still encouraged to submit their information through the retailer’s Vendor Hub.