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Page Title: Produce Sales Department (S-4)
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work  together,  the  results  are  quality  products  for commissary   patrons. Frozen  items  are  also  received  for  the  S-3 department. For instance, whole turkeys, turkey parts,  and  a  large  variety  of  pork,  beef,  and chicken  parts  are  included  in  frozen  food  items. Although  these  items  are  frozen,  you  must  pay close  attention  to  ensure  that  correct  temperatures in the meat cases are maintained. Often, a case will defrost and refreeze without any evidence of this  happening.  Of  course,  when  this  happens,  the frozen items should be surveyed. The bottom line is  that  you  should  prevent  this  from  happening in  your  commissary.  Keep  a  close  eye  on  your cases,  the  temperatures,  and  other  frozen  food conditions  that  might  cause  a  loss  of  items  to survey.  Case  load  limits  and  stock  lines  must strictly be adhered to. Normally, your commissary will have a butcher shop manager to oversee the S-3 department, but it is your responsibility as a supervisor  to  assist  in  making  sure  the  overall operation is running according to prescribed pro- cedures.  Constant  patrols  of  the  meat  display  area are  a  requirement  of  good  commissary  manage- ment. These areas must be kept dry and clean for safety  and  health  reasons.  In  the  meat  depart- ment,  a  3  1/2-percent  markup  should  be  added to  the  price  of  the  meat  before  the  items  reach the cash register. Just as with produce, when meat department  items  are  sold  through  the  cash register, the normal 5-percent surcharge is added to the price of the items. Your meat department will  demand  a  certain  percentage  of  your  total commissary   sales.   This   is   usually   always   the highest  percent  of  sales.  To  maintain  this percentage, you must assist your meat department by keeping an eye on the display area for any type of  problems.  Knowledge  of  the  various  cuts  of meats  is  very  easy  to  pick  up.  This  knowledge  will help you on the sales floor to assist customers with common   questions.   Meat-merchandising   tech- niques  are  taught  through  NAVRESSO  work- shops.   Contact   NAVRESSO   through   proper channels  for  any  help  you  may  need. Produce Sales Department (S-4) Bulk produce for Navy commissaries usually arrives from vendors by daily deliveries. The pro- duce sales department initiates and verifies the receipts  of  bulk  produce.  After  the  produce  is received,  the  produce  sales  department  is  then responsible  for  trimming,  sorting,  pricing,  and displaying  the  merchandise. For  the  commissary  supervisor,  produce  is  a department  that  requires  constant  patrol  and supervision.  This  tight  control  is  necessary  not only for the sake of restocking at optimum times but also for keeping the area clean and safe for the patrons. The customer should be able to move freely through the produce area without stepping on fallen fruits and vegetables and suffering per- sonal injury. You will find that if you keep your produce  area  clean  and  well  stocked,  your  sales will remain at the desired percentage levels. In  the  produce  department,  a  2  1/2-percent markup should be added to the price of the pro- duce  before  the  items  reach  the  cash  register. When  the  items  are  checked  through  the  cash register, the normal 5-percent surcharge is added to the price of the items. For the store to achieve these  charges,  the  merchandise  must  be  fit  for resale. The information below should offer a few rules  a  good  supervisor  will  wish  to  enforce. There are a few commonsense principles that should be observed by all commissary personnel working   in   the   S-4   department.   First   of   all, “handle  with  care”  should  be  an  ironclad  rule. As  a  supervisor,  you  should  insist  on  the observance of this rule by all personnel who will have  anything  to  do  with  the  handling  of  fresh fruits and vegetables in your commissary. Rough handling  will  inevitably  mean  a  serious  loss  in quality. Remember, quality is the most important asset  of  any  produce  department.  A  loss  in  quality will always result in a loss in sales. You can even reduce   rough   handling   by   the   customer   by arranging the displays so that the customer can make  selections  without  digging  into  the  produce. Another rule you should remember to enforce is  “keep  it  cool.”  Refrigeration  will  slow  down respiration  (“breathing”)  in  fresh  fruits  and vegetables.  Generally  speaking,  the  lower  the  rate of respiration, the slower the loss of quality will be. The produce that you display on the sales floor will  not  require  the  low  refrigeration  temperatures you must use for extended storage. Temperatures of   40°F   to   50°F   will   keep   most   produce   in satisfactory  condition  for  resale  for  3  to  4  days. Of  course,  there  are  the  exceptions  to  this  rule. Bananas,  avocados,  sweet  potatoes,  and  one  or two other commodities should not be kept under refrigeration  in  the  retail  store  under  most conditions. The average commissary will need to donate 10 percent of the space of the whole commissary to   the   produce   department.   Because   of   this, proper  display  of  the  merchandise  is  essential. If  you,  as  a  supervisor,  encounter  problems 8-18

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