Recipe for success – how UK food firms can crack the US

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Image copyright Graze
Image caption Graze discovered that its nut packs were a bit hit in the United States

While curry-mad Britons cannot get sufficient mango chutney, it appears that Americans cannot stand the sticky things. When it initially broadened to the United States in 2013, #peeee

That was exactly what popular UK treats firm Graze discovered out quite rapidly.

“Our strategy in the United States was to at first introduce our whole British variety and see how whatever decreased,” states Graze’s president Anthony Fletcher.

“Some things Americans liked, and some they definitely hated … [such as] mango chutney. They were stating ‘exactly what is this acidic yellow blob?’.”

Revenue prospective

For lots of UK food and beverage business breaking the United States is the holy grail.

With its population of more than 326 million individuals, the huge American market can provide British grub and alcohol organisations substantial earnings.

But as the UK’s biggest grocery store group Tesco can confirm, being a success stateside is far from simple. Back in 2013 it offered its six-year-old Californian endeavor Fresh &&Easy after losses amounting to more than £ 1bn($1.4 bn).

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Media caption How junk food company Graze split the United States

So how precisely can a UK food and beverage company dominate the United States? We asked a variety of business who have actually done simply that to expose the tricks of their success.

Graze’s Antony Fletcher states that his business took a seat and created a strategy whereby they would study their United States online sales information to rapidly exercise precisely which of its junk food loads Americans wished to purchase, which ones they didn’t like, and which ones might be adjusted to much better fulfill United States tastes.

“We are really fortunate because we offer through our site,” he states. “And we get 15,000 item rankings an hour, which provides us a substantial benefit – we can learn really rapidly exactly what individuals like and do not like.”

Differing tastes

So, releasing in the United States with its whole series of items, within days Graze discovered that American clients liked its packs of blended nuts, however could not deal with things like the already-mentioned mango chutney, or the company’s “deconstructed Jaffa Cakes”.

The latter wasn’t purchased in the United States due to the fact that American customers didn’t understand anything about Jaffa Cakes, the popular UK orange and chocolate-topped mini-cakes.

Graze quickly trimmed exactly what was readily available to United States clients, and utilized their evaluations to alter the solutions of other items, such as its bbq sauce. It likewise rapidly presented some United States particular lines, such as “Creamy Range Kern Pops”, which is popcorn with a “velvety, tangy kick”.

Mr Fletcher states that Graze likewise studied the length of time the numerous United States shipment companies required to get its treat boxes to clients’ doors, so that it might picked the quickest in each state.

Today United States sales represent half of the business’s £ 75.8 m yearly incomes.

Marketing modifications

David Wilson’s specialty is that he presented the vegetarian variation of chicken nuggets to the United States market.

Image copyright Quorn
Image caption Quorn brought its meat replacement nuggets to the United States

Back in 2000 he was a co-owner of the then business that owned meat alternative brand name Quorn.

At the time the item was mostly purchased in the UK as a replacement for beef mince, and made by users into meals such as spaghetti Bolognese or chilli.

Seeking to break the United States market, the strategy of Mr Wilson and his coworkers was to rather market Quorn in the United States as a chicken replacement, consisting of the intro of Quorn nuggets.

Mr Wilson relocated to New York to organize the relocation, and after the nuggets were gotten by upmarket United States grocery store chain Whole Food Market, Quorn has actually never ever recalled in the nation.

Lengthy research study

Today Mr Wilson still resides in the States, and runs a service called Green Seed Group that encourages and assists UK and other foreign food companies that want to introduce in the United States.

“The very first thing that any food company that wishes to burglarize American have to do is research study.” he states.

“And by that I do not imply take a week’s vacation in Florida or a weekend in New York, you need to transfer to the United States and absorb its food culture. You have to go to grocery store after grocery store, and dining establishment after dining establishment to study the market.

  • This is the 14th story in a series called Connected Commerce, which weekly highlights business all over the world that are effectively exporting, and trading beyond their house market.

“The practical thing is then to go to the huge food fairs. Simply as a visitor, and then purchase a stand. You then require to see if you can draw in purchasers for independent shops. The similarity Walmart will not even take a look at you unless you are currently revealing some sales success in the United States.

“And work with a US-based specialist to assist you discover prospective purchasers, and guide you on identifying laws and so on

“The something that is a lot easier and less expensive nowadays is marketing. Back in my Quorn days it might be costly, now companies have social networks.”

UK natural tea and natural supplements firm Pukka Herbs likewise advises that fellow British food companies go to trade fairs – both in the United States and in other places abroad – so that they can satisfy possible purchasers.

Image copyright Pukka Herbs
Image caption The group at Pukka Herbs advise that UK food companies go to trade fairs in the United States

“We satisfied our very first abroad purchaser at an exhibition in Germany, and after that we went to trade convention in the United States in 2009 to flaunt or teas, and we got gotten by a wholesaler in the north east of the nation,” states Pukka Herbs co-founder Tim Westwell.

The business was very first established in 2001 and the United States market now represents 10% of its turnover.

British ex-pat Tracy Claros established her organisation, the Sticky Toffee Company, in Austin, Texas, in 2003. Today her business has yearly earnings of $4m (£ 3m), and her stockists consist of Whole Foods Market, Costco and Walmart.

Her recommendations is deal something brand-new, and be client.

“Come with a distinct, well-branded item, and be prepared to be here for the long run,” she states.

UK beer company Brewdog is one business taking this long-lasting technique in the United States, a lot so that it has actually constructed a brewery in Ohio to make its existence long-term.

Image caption Tracy Claros has actually presented Americans to the happiness of sticky toffee pudding

Mr Wilson from Green Seed Group includes: “Cracking America begins with having a special brand name deal that harmonizes the American way of life.

“It is everything about a great market method, sound sponsorship, and a fair bit of perseverance. If you get it right, the reward is big, however if you do not it can be a pricey misadventure.”

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