In today's health-conscience markets, the demand for fresh produce is growing constantly. Additionally, the demand for fresh produce also depends on how fresh it is and the size of its shelf space for displayed stocks which may attract more consumers to buy it. Furthermore, perishable or deteriorating items deteriorates over time and their expiration dates are often an important factor in consumers’ purchase decision. As a result, in this paper, we assume that the demand for fresh produce is a time-varying function of its freshness, displayed volume, and expiration date. With the demand being freshness-and-stock-dependent, it may be profitable to maintain high stock level at the end of the replenishment cycle. Hence, we relax the traditional assumption of zero ending inventory to non-zero ending inventory. Consequently, the proposed objective is to determine the optimal replenishment cycle time and ending inventory level in order to maximise the annual total profit. Then we prove that the annual total profit is strictly pseudo-concave with respect to both decision variables, which simplifies the search for the global solution to a local optimal. Numerical examples are then presented to highlight the theoretical implications and managerial insights.
International Journal of Systems Science: Operations & Logistics 3(3), p.138-147