How to Make Your Food Product Stand Out at the Grocery Store
Standing out from your competition is difficult for any business. No where is that more apparent than the grocery store shelves. You’ve been grocery shopping—your eyes graze the shelf and make a split second decision based off of very little info: What brands do you know? Which label is the most attractive? What looks yummiest for dinner?
As a food entrepreneur with products on the shelf, you must balance the consumers’ whims with strict regulations, and figure out how to square up against brands like Wonder Bread, Doritos and the like.
Before you throw a tantrum in the grocery store aisle, Xander Winkel with the Ennovation Center has some rock solid guidance. Set down your bowl of cereal and dig in:
Xander shared several great tips, how-to’s and go-to resources in his class “10 Steps to Selling Your Food Product in Stores” as part of Mid-Continent Public Library’s Square One business program. However, one of the key elements that holds up many food producers is packaging. Xander covered exactly what is needed and where it needs to be placed. Here are the takeaways for your food product business.
On the front:
Company name –generally in the form of a logo.
Product –used to identify different flavors within your product line as well.
Net weight in metric and imperial – it is important to note that you cannot use adjectives such as “HUGE 24 oz”.
On the back:
Nutrition panel – required for businesses that sell $50,000 a year or more.
Best by date – unless your product contains specific products (such as dairy), the best by date does not have to be a super scientific time period – put a reasonable length of time based on your experiences with your product.
Batch number – this information is used in case of a recall. If you are a small manufacturer, you can generally use the best by date as the batch number.
Ingredients – listed from the most to the least. Ingredient labels also need to include ingredients of ingredients – what makes up the flour that you use in your products. The ingredients list also needs to include allergen information, even if there is a chance one of the “Big 8” are in or could possibly be in your product.
Bar Code – this is the identifiable tag most retailers use to sell your product. The first five digits are for the company and the next five digits identify the product.
The manufacturer’s company name and address.
Xander recommended utilizing the Food and Drug Administration’s complete guide, which can be found here: http://www.fda.gov/Food/GuidanceRegulation/.
This class is taught on a regular basis and is a great starting point for anyone looking to get their food products on store shelves. Some additional resources can help with your business:
More questions on selling your products or services?
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