The We-Grow Supply company is a farm supply company that buys, stores, and sells feed, seed, fertilizer, and pesticide. To be competitive, they need to automate their system for planning purchases, tracking inventory, pricing, and handling sales. The company has 400 retail stores spread throughout the region. The company hopes to open more stores in the future.

Each inventory item has a description and Stock-Item Classification (SIC). Each SIC consists of a code and a description. An industry standard establishes the accepted SIC codes and their descriptions.

To aid in planning purchases and pricing, the company needs to track sales statistics on a per store basis. The information should be detailed enough to identify seasonal trends and predict overstocks and shortages. All sales statistics, including inventory item, quantity, date of purchase, need to be sent to the purchasers in main office on a daily basis.

The inventory-item prices change frequently and can vary from store to store. Company purchasers review and set items prices on a regular basis. To simplify their jobs and reduce the effort required to maintain price data, the purchasers set an item’s for a group of stores, instead of individual stores. For example, 10 lb. bags of wheat may be priced separately for the Northern Stores and the Southern Store, horse bridles may be priced separately the Urban Stores and Non-Urban Stores, and corn seed may be priced for just one group of stores that includes of all them. Marketing personnel and purchasers establish store groups for a variety of reasons, including: distribution costs, regional demographics, regional agriculture, and geographic locations. Although each store may belong to many different groups, a item can only have at most one price for each store. In other words, the store groups for which an item is priced must be non-overlapping. Each item must have a single agreed-upon price, even if that item is in more than one region.

Some inventory items may not be sold in some stores. For example, a pesticide may be illegal in a region, and therefore, not sold in that region. A store may not currently have the items that it sells in stock. If an item is out-of-stock, then a sales clerk must be able to determine the closest store that has the item in stock and request a transfer of the merchandise. A sales clerk should have immediate access to price information that is no older than one day for every item that the store sells. In the addition, a sales clerk should have access to fairly recent stock information for all stores.

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