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My name's Darrell and I founded HealthFoodWholesaler on the back of my experience in the health food and pet food sectors over the last 14 years.
I am a producer of own-brand products and export to over 30 countries and I'm a retailer too, with two large online shops, staff, forklifts, rent and plenty of other overheads to cover.
So I've experienced the health food business both as a buyer and seller and I've learnt how hard it is to get a product under the nose of a buyer at a wholesalers, let alone under the noses of all the retailers, caterers, hotels, cafe's and other food businesses across the UK.
My own-brand products have been distributed in the UK's largest chain health store in the past (yes you can probably guess which one), I have products listed with UK health food wholesalers and UK pet food wholesalers. I also export containers of own-brand products across the World to places I'd never thought of selling too like Israel, New Zealand, South Korea, South Africa and the US. In fact as of 2016 I have products in about 30 countries and regularly exhibit at international trade fairs in Germany and Italy.
BUT over the years, as a producer, I have had many frustrating moments, some very costly too, I've had to take legal action to get paid and felt at the mercy of some of the big buyers. I've invested time and money into an idea, worked through the night to bring it to life and stood proud as it set sail... only to see it stutter or even sink some time later as I tried and to get through to buyers at wholesalers and food stores. When I did secure a meeting I had buyers asking for free stock for dozens of shops, for me to deliver for free to their warehouse (timed delivery too which costs extra!) or for me to book expensive catalogue adverts or contribute towards advertising as part of the deal to be listed.
I've seen more and more margin disappear as wholesalers demand 30% margin of producers, only to give 25% markup to the retailer. I've attended expensive exhibitions away from home with van hire, staff, food and accommodation costs all in the hope that buyers might be at the show and see my products, however I've had shows where more than 50% of the people who came to my stand were trying to sell me their products, the cheek of it!
I've been so desperate, I've paid out for full page adverts in magazines based on all their sales talk about readership and relevant features and how they "love what I do", then crossed my fingers and hoped I'd see a return, but who bought the magazine, who saw the advert and who acted upon it? Seeing and advert and acting on it, is such a long way from one click of a link on a website or newsletter.