Morrisons backs start-up food and drink companies

By James Ridler

- Last updated on GMT

Morrisons hopes its Growing British Brands programme will help brands reach new customers across GB
Morrisons hopes its Growing British Brands programme will help brands reach new customers across GB

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Morrisons has launched a new programme to support British food and drink entrepreneurs in a bid to help the country bounce back from the COVID-19 pandemic.

The accelerator programme, Growing British Brands, is open to British start-ups, entrepreneurs and small businesses.

It offers a place on the retailers’ shelves in all 497 Morrisons stores – as well as its online platform – and the opportunity to expand into food box and wholesale channels.

Applicants can also look forward to support to help them scale up and accelerate growth, as well as advice covering the entire supply chain, from production to packaging and marketing and logistics.

‘Entrepreneurial spirit’

David Potts, Morrisons chief executive, said: “There are thousands of people with great ideas, but getting them to market at scale is often a long, risky and complicated process.

“We know and understand the entrepreneurial spirit and want to play our full part in helping the next generation of British brands quickly reach national distribution. 

“For too long, small businesses have lacked the opportunity and perhaps confidence to scale up a great idea capable of supplying hundreds of stores at serious volumes.

“We hope this programme can provide the support, guidance and confidence for great brands with great products to lift their horizons, to think big and to reach new customers all around Great Britain.” 

The retailer’s latest push for smaller producers followed its Local Foodmakers programme in 2017, which has resulted in 1,300 products from local food makers, growers and producers appearing on Morrisons store shelves.

Local producers

More than 500 producers presented their products to Morrisons​ in the first month of the programme, with products ranging from cheeses, milk and pork, as well as natural fruit vinegars, craft gins and gluten-free pies and pasties.

Commenting on Morrisons’s latest entrepreneur programme, food minister Victoria Prentis said: “The ‘Growing British Brands’ programme will boost small businesses, encouraging them to scale up and reach thousands of potential new customers.

“Our food and drink businesses are renowned for high quality products and standards of animal welfare.

“They form a core part of our agrifood sector which supports over four million jobs and provides £121bn to the UK economy. I welcome this announcement by Morrisons to further support entrepreneurs in this vital sector.”

Related topics: Start-ups, Business Leaders

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