Specialty Food Magazine


Specialty Food Magazine is the leading publication for retailers, manufacturers and foodservice professionals in the specialty food trade. It provides news, trends and business-building insights that help readers keep their businesses competitive.

Issue link: https://specialtyfoodmagazine.epubxp.com/i/912382

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Page 99 of 139

The Online Solution Center For SFA Members Only! A private, moderated environment exclusively for Association members and member candidates. Connect with other specialty food entrepreneurs on any topic, on your own schedule. Accessing this benefit is easy—simply go to community.specialtyfood.com and use your specialtyfood.com credentials to log in. "We are trying to help them build the skills and knowledge they need to sustain themselves over the long haul," he says. "Not just by looking at business metrics, which are important, but by pay- ing attention to their sense of purpose and how being a food maker connects them to things they want to change in the food system." To that end, Nevers links entrepreneurs with people and resources to form strategic alliances and talks them through some of the hurdles they may face along the way. "Food startups operate at a different speed than other types of startups, so we try to help them think about how to sustain their passion for what they do," Nevers says. Also helping specialty food makers realize their dream is Eileen Gordon, CEO of Barnraiser, a social marketplace that allows people to discover food startups and fund them online. Gordon focuses on how the proliferation of trends such as plant-based, alternative proteins, and clean ingredients, has grown the need for support of these products' unique qualities. "We are just launching a new e-commerce initiative from with- in our discovery and recommendation platform, called Barnraiser Small Batch," she says. "Food, beverage, and healthy product producers can use these limited-quantity selling events to create excitement, and predictable, higher-margin sales, and beneficial cash f lows during the production of a new or limited-quantity item. It expands their direct-to-customer selling opportunities, grows their customer list, and tells the story and inspiration behind their brand." Meanwhile, CEO and co-founder of The Future Market, Mike Lee, hopes to inspire food makers on how to learn through build- ing. "I'm a big proponent of rapid prototyping and concept product design as the primary way to understand the potential of emerging trends and product opportunities," he says. "The food industry needs more venues where it can safely go out on a limb and tangibly illustrate where it thinks the future of food lies. Culture is stronger than strategy and [the industry needs] to more aggressively build a culture of innovation through building ambitious products and learning from them." Julie Gallagher is managing editor of Specialty Food Magazine. WINTER 2018 97

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