Retailers’ Interest In Specialty Foods More Than Doubles In 2017

TORONTO — The specialty food industry is a $127 billion-dollar industry, in part fueled by small business growth in the category. Once limited to finding customers at local food markets and small shops, artisanal food brands are now able to expand beyond the success in their local markets and are securing new distribution deals like never before.

“Amazon’s acquisition of Whole Foods leveled the playing field, increased accessibility to specialty food and verifies to the industry the types of brands that will drive the future of commerce,” says Ben Zifkin, CEO Founder of Hubba. “It isn’t about the P&G’s and the Johnson and Johnson’s brands, it is about Craft Brands coming to the forefront and gaining market share over the traditional heavyweights.”

Independent brands are creating a loyal following in a world traditionally dominated by huge incumbents by catering to customers’ unique and niche tastes and specific dietary trends. A niche brand that only captures 1-10% of the specialty food market can now be a billion dollar brand because it is competing in a global market.

The advent of a commerce network like Hubba has proven to be the ideal breeding ground for product success, helping brands stand out in saturated markets to get discovered by the buyers looking for new products for their stores, subscription boxes and ecommerce sites to meet customers’ ever changing needs. Each week thousands of products are introduced on the platform and hundreds of new business relationships are started each month.

Companies like Cheesepop, a unique luxury puffed cheese snack, have been able to secure invaluable connections, speed up their sales and export process exponentially and secure deals in new markets to grow their business at scale.

“The impact that came from the connection between the Wembley stores and Cheesepop via Hubba was definitely significant,” says Lisa Bottema, Operations Manager at Cheesepop. “The first order included four displays carrying over 250 Cheesepop cups each, and paved the way to two more orders after that and an agreement to carry new products as they are developed.”

Consumer preference for specialty food products have grown at double digits, outpacing mainstream food staples and consumers appetite for cleaner, authentic ingredients. In response to consumer demand, buyers are looking to capitalize on this interest and keyword searches related to small batch and gourmet foods are up 136% in 2017 on Hubba.

“It is important to introduce new food-makers frequently and new products, that’s what grabs the consumer’s attention the most,” says Nancy Brown, founder of Foodlyn. “A lot of efficiencies are generated as a result of Hubba, and I have food-makers reaching out to me who are exactly what Foodlyn is looking for and have orders coming in from every state.” ”

Buyers today can dedicate as much as 30 days to the product discovery process when launching a new category or building planograms, with Hubba buyer's initial discovery for relevant product submissions reduced by 83%.

About Hubba
With +60,000 members, Hubba is the leading business network designed to empower independent companies to connect on opportunities to grow their business. The platform provides powerful tools for buyers to discover new products from some of the world’s most innovative and creative brands, and opens new avenues for product creators to expand their reach and build partnerships with retailers across the globe and over multiple categories.

Source: Hubba