Next Friday, the industry will be gathering at the Grosvenor House Hotel on London's Park Lane for one of its top annual events ­ the Caravan Diamond Ball. It's a great networking event and an even better party.
But how many of the 800 or so retailers and suppliers who will cram into the hotel's Great Room know what Caravan is or what it does with the money raised? And, in truth, how many actually care?
The answer to all these questions is probably the same: not enough. And that's one reason why Gillian Barker, the new director general of Caravan, feels one of her key roles is fostering a greater awareness of the work undertaken by the grocery industry charity. This year's Diamond Ball will be Barker's first in her new role. But she is no stranger to the event or the charity.
And, after a career as retail buyer, she will not be a stranger to many of the suppliers in the room either.
Barker officially joined the charity this month from Safeway, where she was commercial director for fresh and frozen foods. Before that she had spent 20 years with Sainsbury, including two postings to its US subsidiary Shaw's.
As Barker readily admits, moving from the cut and thrust of a trading floor to the charity world is a major change of direction.
"When I told people I was going to do this job, there were those people who looked at me as if I had two heads, but there were those who knew exactly why I was doing this," she says.
But ­ careful not to come over as too sentimental ­ Barker says the role appealed on a number of levels, not least the fact that it allowed her to put something back while staying in an industry she clearly loves.
Barker joins at a key time for the charity. It has been through a major programme of significant change, including a controversial rebranding that saw the NGBF name disappear.
Whatever your thoughts on that, there's no doubt that the charity has emerged with a clearer sense of purpose and a more proactive outlook.
It now needs to work harder to articulate all of that to the industry, says Barker.
"We cannot help any more people until we secure more funds. We cannot do that until people know what we do. And they will not know that until they know who we are."
For the record, Caravan is helping 1,300 people who, having worked in the grocery industry, and through no fault of their own, have fallen on hard times.
These people receive help in a number of ways: a weekly income of £11, a Christmas bonus, one-off grants and other practical support like ensuring their homes are equipped with the essential domestic appliances. It can all make a huge difference says Barker, who points out that meeting the beneficiaries of such help can be "salutary stuff".
Clearly the demands on the charity are not going to ease in the coming years. People are living longer and many have not made sufficient provision for their retirement (or anything else for that matter), which means more are likely to fall into financial hardship. Given all of that, it is easy to see why fundraising is so important to the charity. And Barker says it is important to make sure the industry understands why its support for Caravan is so vital.
"There are 80 benevolent charities out there, so we are fighting for our share of the charity pound. "There is lots of call on the people who give and we have very loyal retail and supplier support. When we call on people to give their support, they have to know why."
As well as continuing to work hard to build wider awareness of Caravan in the industry, Barker says the charity will also try to communicate better with those who support its activities ­ particularly in letting them know how the money they raise is being put to good use.
Barker also feels Caravan has an important educational role to play in raising awareness among the industry's employees of the importance of putting something aside for a rainy day ­ whether saving for the unexpected or making provision to top up the (increasingly worthless) state benefit.
"We want to make sure that nobody needs us," says Barker, "while remembering there will always be those who slip through the net."