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Hershey seems to be making a conscious effort to capitalize on the opportunities that surround them as a company in my opinion. The biggest threat that in my opinion is a huge opportunity for Hershey is the fact that consumers are wanting a healthier product when it comes to chocolate and candy. That in itself is sort of a contradiction, however, it can be done. For example, Hershey is replacing high-fructose corn syrup in some of its products with sugar, making the firm a high-profile example of the move away from high-fructose corn syrup that may fuel weight gain and diabetes (David, & David, Pg. 33, 2018). This is a start to producing a healthier product that resonates with the consumer. Along those lines, Hershey can also invest in using Stevia, which is an intensely sweet-tasting plant that has been used to sweeten beverages and make tea since the 16th century. Stevia is a plant is originally native to Paraguay and Brazil but is now also grown in Japan and China. It is used as a non-nutritive sweetener and herbal supplement (Nichols, 2018). One of its competitors, Russell Stover Candies, who falls under the Lindt & Sprunglii company has been very successful using Stevia in its Sugar-Free candy.
Regarding the threats that surround Hershey, obviously competition is a huge threat, the fact that each company is attempting to change its products it forces Hershey to do the same to compete. Hershey has to continue to adapt and differentiate itself from its competitors which I feel they are making a good effort in doing. Beyond that, the threats that I see that cannot be ignored would be the rising prices in raw material, such as Cocoa. For example, according to the text unlike other crops, such as corn or soybeans, cocoa is more difficult to produce, and cocoa prices are expected to rise substantially moving forward, according to the international cocoa Organization (ICO) (David, & David, Pg. 33, 2018). In my opinion, if Hershey can continue to focus on producing a healthier product that resonates with consumers, differentiate itself from the competition through social responsibility and offering a healthier product without compromising taste and quality, and continue to adapt to the market they will be successful.
David, F. R., & David, F. R. (2018). Strategic management: A competitive advantage approach, concepts, global edition (16th ed.)
Nichols, H. (2018 January 4). What is Stevia? Medical News Today. Retrieved from: https://www.medicalnewstoday.com/articles/287251