Our 90-day programme will help up to 30 artisan food startups kickstart their business. We will provide them with a fully-fitted retail platform and manage their sales, so they can grow their business in an affordable and manageable way. As well as selling their products on the High Street, food startups can access to a co-working space, industry-specific workshops and business support, a growing network of service providers and mentors and in-store measures to help them engage with their customers and understand their needs. At the end of the programme, our startups will be part of a Buyers Fair, enabling them to engage with local buyers of artisan food products such as independent grocers, delis and specialist food shops.
Following a successful pilot, we expect the programme to run quarterly, helping up to 120 food startups every year. 87% of businesses that use an incubator programme are still thriving after five years and we hope to achieve this within the food startup sector.
What we'll deliver:
Why it's a great idea:
More than 10,000 new food products launch every year and the artisan food sector (worth £5.7 billion) is expected to grow by 14% in the next few years. However, 1 in 10 food startups do not survive their first 18 months. We believe that food entrepreneurs should have the opportunity to do what they love. We believe that this inspires a positive impact on themselves, their work and their local community. .
We spoke to over 150 food entrepreneurs, industry experts and enthusiastic foodies to better understand the food startup sector. We found that many faced common barriers, particularly with developing a strong mentor network (78%) and accessing customer feedback. In addition, 3 out of 5 highlighted the importance of networking with fellow artisans, sharing advice and collaborating to succeed. Our research demonstrated how a food hub on the High Street is really needed.
Overall, 94% believed that the High Street would benefit from Kitchen Table Projects.
Steps to get it done:
We are a business with a social mission. We believe that by adopting a collaborative approach that pools our resources, we can have a broader positive impact that ripples through the community.
We have developed a strong local network, with strong links with the Lambeth Food Partnership, whose initiatives closely parallel our own, Transition Town Brixton, Impact Hub Brixton and the Hatch Incubator, run by One Planet Ventures. We believe that this network is an integral element to running a successful food startup accelerator programme.
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