Why Financial Technical Assistance Is Key To Food Entrepreneurs’ Success

Financial Technical Assistance

Core beliefs animate everything that you do, in your personal life and in business. At the Food Finance Institute, we have a few core beliefs that undergird our work:

  1. We want every food, beverage and value-added agriculture business that wants to be successful to be successful;
  2. We know that to be successful, businesses need to understand their business model, their financial position and how to go about raising money; and
  3. We believe everyone that wants to learn the skills to be successful is capable.

The Food Finance Institute exists to provide high quality financial technical assistance to growing food and farm businesses. We focus on this because we believe it is the biggest gap in accelerating the growth and success of more good food and beverage companies. We have seen companies transform, grow and thrive when they have access to this kind of assistance and when the founders surround themselves with the right people, including technical assistance providers.

As consultants to food businesses, we see smart people who jumped in and hit the ground running but haven’t necessarily had the time or experience to fully understand their financial situation or come up with a concrete game plan for fundraising and financial management. We often play the role of “coach” or mentor in these situations, helping guide food entrepreneurs through difficult stages of business growth, like a significant fundraising round. The best food and beverage entrepreneurs know that they need help, and seek it out.

On our podcast this week, we talked with Alex Linkow, Director of the Fair Food Fund, an innovative Fair Food Network program that provides patient, customized financing and business technical assistance to good food enterprises. Alex talked about the importance of technical assistance to entrepreneurs and how that has been essential to their model of lending and investing in food businesses. He also intimated that lack of access to technical assistance, like lack of access to capital, is particularly acute for women and people of color.

Meaningful financial technical assistance can transform food businesses for the better, allowing them to grow and thrive. We encourage current and aspiring food entrepreneurs to seek the assistance they need and build their team with that in mind.

And now, our roundup of the best food and beverage finance news, events and resources from around the web…

Consultant With TabletBusiness Model Insights

Raising CapitalRaising Capital

National Wholesale Brands

CPG/National Brands

Grocery Store Produce Section

Market Trends

  • From the Expo West Aisles, Themes Emerge (Project Nosh) – “Despite the Walmarts, Targets and Krogers of the world investing heavily in their natural and organic product assortments, there’s still a place for natural retailers to serve as a testing ground for new products and brands. Whole Foods, in particular, offers brands the controlled space to try to sell innovative products to forward thinking consumers, all while still offering a national footprint. In the snack category, natural brands have long been accused of sacrificing taste in order to hit dietary needs such as vegan or low-fat. But with consumer acceptance of healthy fats and continuous flavor innovation on the flavor-side as well, those brands are hoping that’s no longer the case.”
  • 5 of the biggest trends from Expo West 2019 (Mintel)
  • How to engage with the new consumer (New Hope Network)

Regenerative AgricultureFarming and AgTech

Mergers And AcquisitionsDeals/M&A

  • Food Distributors Hungry for Acquisitions (BGL Consumer Insider) – “Evolving consumer preferences and rapid technological change are transforming the food supply chain. Food distributors are refining offerings to capture on-trend products and capitalize on changing market dynamics, accelerating acquisition-driven growth. Changing demographics, rising disposable income, and the pursuit of healthy living are reshaping consumer demand for specialty, better-for-you, and sustainable food options. Purchasing behavior is favoring premiumization and authenticity over cost, and more consumers are spending on food outside the home. Technology and eCommerce are blurring traditional channels, fueling growth in new delivery methods. Food distributors are broadening portfolios in line with these consumer shifts, and recent acquisition activity is reflective of this strategy.”
  • Money makes the natural foods and products world grow (New Hope Network)
  • How is the flood of investment funds reshaping the food & beverage space? (Food Navigator USA)

EventsIndustry Events

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