There are billions of pounds of untapped value potential within food and drink. And it’s not where you might expect it. The unprecedented explosion of startup and scaleup brands has driven huge growth in the industry, 59% of it in fact, and they’re only just scratching the surface.

Yet despite their meteoric rise, a massive 81% feel unsupported by the industry. This limits their growth and ability to gain traction, putting a plug on commercial opportunities for themselves and the companies with whom they could be working. Whether it’s unrealistic MOQs, inflexible payment terms or limited access to data, there are many operational barriers holding SMEs back.

At Young Foodies, we believe challenger consumer brands play an instrumental role in the ecosystem of the wider consumer goods industry. So we see it as our responsibility to spark a paradigm shift to rebalance the playing field. And by doing so, injecting growth and commercial benefit to them, the industry business providers they rely on to function, and the wider industry.

By easing operational pain-points, adopting a partnership mentality and co-investing in high-growth brands, every manufacturer, logistics provider, retailer, wholesaler and professional services business will reap long-term commercial benefits.

And even though we are an industry chasing its tail with high volumes and low margins, we believe that embracing challenger brands in a more holistic way will widen margins and future-proof your business.

So with this said, we are proud to announce the launch of our ‘Rise to the Challenger’ campaign, in collaboration with the Food & Drink Federation, GS1 UK and the Department of International Trade’s ‘Exporting is Great’ initiative. It aims to engage with all F&B business service providers to actively support small brands, so they can compete fairly and proportionately alongside their blue-chip counterparts. We are calling on the whole industry to get behind this movement - there is huge value and growth potential to unlock from supporting these brands to scale.

We have started the conversation, but we can’t do this alone. If you work in manufacturing, wholesale, retail, supply chain or professional services within the consumer goods industry then we ask that you pledge your support. Visit the campaign microsite and sign up to make a small change of your own.

The louder we shout, the bigger the impact, and the faster this industry can realise the benefit of progress that challenger brands drive.