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Business Models

A business model, not a product, determines whether a food or beverage company makes money. Our resources help you learn what makes a profitable and fundable business model.

Transforming a Food Pantry into an Engine for Rural Prosperity

1 hour & 15 minutes of Free audio by Edible-Alpha®

The Livingston Food Resource Center is a nonprofit food pantry and service provider serving a county of 17,000 people in rural Montana with a food acquisition model to purchase directly from area farmers and ranchers. Kitchen rental, value-added processing, community room rental and catering all provide earned income for their operations.

Podcast about Business Models for businesses that are Pre-Venture | Growing and Scaling

Your Food Business Needs Multiple Strategies

10 minute Free read by Edible-Alpha®

Good strategies are ones that reflect current relationships with customers/partners and current market realities, and thus, can shift as those things shift. Without a well-documented strategy, even well-meaning food entrepreneurs can get distracted or fail to execute on their business’ core needs and goals.

Article about Business Models for businesses that are Growing and Scaling

Willy Street Co-Op

Ownership Differentiates Willy St. Co-op In A Changing Grocery Market

1 hour & 5 minutes of Free audio by Edible-Alpha®

Willy Street Co-op is a set of cooperatively owned retail grocery stores in Madison, WI with 35,000 member-owners and about 400 employees across three stores. They have found that operating transparently and openly, emphasizing cooperative ownership and owner literacy, has provided a point of differentiation in the current marketplace.

Podcast about Business Models for businesses that are Growing and Scaling

ReGrained

ReGrained, A Business Model For The Long Term And The Planet

1 hour & 10 minutes of Free audio by Edible-Alpha®

ReGrained launched their product at scale in January 2018 after multiple iterations of their product (in the crowded bar category) and now are working with other businesses to help them produce/co-brand new products using their production facility and the expertise embedded in their proprietary process.

Podcast about Business Models for businesses that are Growing and Scaling

Amazon Prime

Food Businesses Need To Pay For Space And Attention, Even on Amazon

10 minute Free read by Edible-Alpha®

Because the food space is competitive, online and off, emerging food companies have to spend lots of marketing and sales dollars to get consumer attention and trial by paying to have their product in the right place with the right positioning.

Article about Business Models for businesses that are Growing and Scaling

Median On Farm Household Income

Shifting Farm Business Models

10 minute Free read by Edible-Alpha®

Median on-farm household income has been negative for the past 20 years, with many farms keeping their cash flow positive by increasing their debt load. Finding new business models that allow farmers to be profitable while meeting changing consumer demand will require high-quality technical assistance and coordinated effort from multiple actors.

Article about Business Models for businesses that are Growing and Scaling

Old Fort Market Gardens

The Farmer Education Continuum In The Colorado Mountains

55 minutes of Free audio by Edible-Alpha®

The Old Fort at Hesperus' team sees farming education as a continuum where different people are best served by discreet programs, depending on their interests and stage of development. Their sustainable agriculture program includes an educational garden internship, a farmer-in-training program, and market garden incubator.

Podcast about Business Models for businesses that are Growing and Scaling

Packaging Design and Private Label

Why Private Label Might Be A Great Business Decision

10 minute Free read by Edible-Alpha®

Grocery stores have introduced their own branded "private label" products on their shelves, offering an opportunity for food producers to increase cash flow, maximize production efficiency and diversify revenue streams without having to do all of the brand building and customer relationship management themselves.

Article about Business Models for businesses that are Growing and Scaling

Tribe 9 Foods

How Tribe 9 Foods Balances Economies Of Scale With A Changing Marketplace

55 minutes of Free audio by Edible-Alpha®

Tribe 9 Foods secured growth capital to bring manufacturing in-house for the three brands that merged into their portfolio, something that has allowed them to have control over batch timing, batch size and product quality. In addition, in-house production allows them the flexibility to try new things and have a co-packing line of business for their core product types.

Podcast about Business Models for businesses that are Growing and Scaling

TRIBALÍ

Angela Mavridis Of TRIBALÍ Foods On Resonating With Your Tribe

45 minutes of Free audio by Edible-Alpha®

TRIBALÍ's clean, simple packaging communicates their organic, grass-fed and Paleo certifications, stands out on the freezer shelf and helps communicate their brand's promise to that tribe. Angela Mavridis, TRIBALÍ's founder and CEO reflects that the investor pitch process forces you to learn every single aspect of the business.

Podcast about Business Models for businesses that are Growing and Scaling

Union Kitchen

How Union Kitchen’s Ecosystem Helps Build Profitable Food Businesses

50 minutes of Free audio by Edible-Alpha®

Union Kitchen is a shared-use kitchen and food business accelerator in in Washington D.C. While having a shared-use kitchen eliminates the need for capital for kitchen equipment, there are many other things food businesses need to raise capital for, which is why they have distribution and retail outlets as part of their model.

Podcast about Business Models for businesses that are Pre-Venture | Startups

Keewaydin Farms

Rightsizing The Ship: A Farmer’s Tale of Scaling Down

1 hour & 40 minutes of Free audio by Edible-Alpha®

This hub discovered that the bigger the business got, the more money it lost and that moving aggregation functions off of the owner's farm caused the operation to be less efficient at that level of sales. The owner chose to contract the business to focus on getting profitable and repaying existing suppliers.

Podcast about Business Models for businesses that are Growing and Scaling

When Should Food Businesses Go Online

When Your Food Business Should Go Online

10 minute Free read by Edible-Alpha®

Food businesses should know the role that online sales will play in their revenue stream and in their business model. Consumers are starting to become omnichannel in their food shopping expectations. Like most things in food entrepreneurship, it is best to let your customers lead the way, and if they expect to find you online, go online and conquer.

Article about Business Models for businesses that are Pre-Venture | Startups

Know Brainer

Scaling Innovative Food Products At The Right Time

40 minutes of Free audio by Edible-Alpha®

The ideal market for Know Brainer's individual creamer products has been online with Amazon and their own online store while their multi-serve product is more of a conventional grocery item. They only started to scale their product after extensive customer research and testing.

Podcast about Business Models for businesses that are Growing and Scaling

Growing Chickens

Why and How To Think About Social Impact Investing In Food

10 minute Free read by Edible-Alpha®

Because food businesses need to be financially sustainable to achieve their goals, including impact goals, they need to understand their business model and align their efforts behind the model.When speaking to investors, they should to clearly communicate how their business will make money and on what time horizon.

Article about Business Models for businesses that are Growing and Scaling

Farmers Building A Brand

Farmers: Let’s Build A Brand!

10 minute Free read by Edible-Alpha®

Food consumers have been seeking more "premium" experiences from the food they purchase, including better connections with their food and understanding where it comes from. Developing brands for agricultural products can help farmers produce products that earn them a premium and are meeting a real consumer demand.

Article about Business Models for businesses that are Pre-Venture | Startups

Top Note Tonic

How Top Note Tonic Pivoted Beverage Categories and Understood Their Market

50 minutes of Free audio by Edible-Alpha®

Top Note has pivoted away from syrups towards niche ready-to-drink, already mixed sparkling tonics, using their foray into syrups to further understand the mixer category and build their brand. Mary reflected that having a good bank as a partner is important and that learning about money has been the most useful thing that she has picked up as an entrepreneur.

Podcast about Business Models for businesses that are Growing and Scaling

Creativity In Food Entrepreneurship

Creativity Is Essential To Food Entrepreneurship

10 minute Free read by Edible-Alpha®

Figuring out the best way to finance food businesses by optimizing their capital structure to reach minimum efficient scale is an undervalued creative exercise. But the myriad of challenges that confront entrepreneurs, from finding the right suppliers, co-packers, distributors, brokers or even the right target customer also demand creativity.

Article about Business Models for businesses that are Pre-Venture | Startups

Mobcraft Brewery And Taproom

MobCraft Beer’s Creative Sourcing of Recipes and Financing

45 minutes of Free audio by Edible-Alpha®

MobCraft beer is a brewery and taproom with a unique business model of crowdsourcing ideas for beer recipes from their customers. Knowing how much equity they needed vs. debt to finance their facility build out and equipment needs helped them pitch specific asks to both banks and investors, including for their $2 million tap room and production facility.

Podcast about Business Models for businesses that are Growing and Scaling

Madison Sourdough Dave Lohrentz

Growing Madison Sourdough Intentionally Through Vertical Integration

1 hour & 15 minutes of Free audio by Edible-Alpha®

Madison Sourdough has grown using a vertically integrated business model by adding a restaurant that highlights their baked goods and bakery. They have also added an artisanal grain mill to their production processes, sourcing much of the flour themselves from local producers.

Podcast about Business Models for businesses that are Growing and Scaling

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