Custom Printed Ice Cream Tubs

THE CHALLENGE:

Launch a new frozen food brand, make it stand out – and comply with all the requirements of a major retailer. (From scratch, without finance).

THE OUTCOME:

Eye-catching, sustainable product packaging. Go-to-market confidence from flexible, reliable supply backed by strong customer service. Products in mainstream retail freezers!

Jess Salamanca founder of banana scoops

Banana Scoops – An Inspiration to GO FOR IT!

Never let a Pandemic get in the way of a good business idea! Despite the significant uncertainties caused by Covid, Young FMCG entrepreneur Jess Salamanca had a stratospheric 2020 with the launch of her innovative dairy-free ice cream brand Banana Scoops.

Starting from the kitchen-table after leaving an ‘unfulfilling’ corporate job, Jess boldly took the plunge into the unknown in the search of a more meaningful mission.

Being from a foodie background – growing up in her family’s restaurant in Spain – and with a passion for healthy eating, she noticed a gap in the market after following fitness and healthy-eating Instagram posters publishing recipes for fruit-based, dairy-free ice cream.

Bing!

How can I mass produce something genuinely healthy, that tastes like and feels like ice cream – made from fruit? Then it would be healthy to eat ice cream for breakfast!’ was the lightbulb moment.

A Good Start

So, she went for it. No external investment. Still the sole employee. Whilst starting to ‘get out there’ at Farmer’s Markets, her initial 2020 retail targets were to get onto the shelves of the likes of health-eating specialists such as As Nature Intended and Planet Organic.

Which went to plan. In fact, even better. Because who else but supermarket giant Ocado then expressed interest as they looked to broaden their range and build their specialist suppliers base?

A Mountain to Climb

But, although Jess’ expectations were far exceeded, the challenges also rose with the extra needs that large-scale retail demands.

There were a ton of extra requirements for the likes of Ocado. Food safety, packaging hygiene standards and logistics etc., the list goes on. But they are really supportive of small brands and did everything they could to help get Banana Scoops over the line and into their frozen section’.

At that time, ‘going back to my “why?” was vital’ she says. Belief in herself and her product – and why she originally wanted to develop it – was the driving force for the difficult days.

Sometimes it’s simply lonely. You need a support network. You need to reach out to others in a similar situation, that are launching similar products or at similar stages. That refuels you to keep on keeping on’.

The Secret Sauce for Success?

So what are the most vital pieces in the puzzle to get a big player to sit up, take notice and buy in to a relatively untested supplier? ‘Getting your branding on point is the biggest thing – and nothing reflects that more than your packaging’ explains Salamanca.

Sustainable packaging was also vital, not just for Banana Scoops’ brand values, but for the retailer and their end-consumer’s too.

Getting your branding on point is the biggest thing – and nothing reflects that more than your packaging

Packaging is complicated – but doable’ says Jess. ‘Finding the right supplier is key.

‘My fear was facing huge minimum orders – there are suppliers needing at least 50,000-pc. commitments with long, 8-12-week lead times.

‘Cashflow management is critical for any business, let alone a startup. So how would I be able to know how many cartons were too much or too little to buy in?

‘Would I be overstocked – or would I get caught short and miss out on opportunities?

‘I’d come across Cup Print when researching sustainable pots and tubs and our frozen food manufacturer recommended them as well due to their fast turnaround time and short-run, low minimum order entry requirements and BRCGS High Hygiene Standard.

‘Dealing with Cup Print was super easy. You get one dedicated Account Manager and the service is friendly, understanding and fast.

‘The design team there were incredibly helpful too, with getting colours and finishes just right and all the artwork elements placed and adjusted perfectly – nothing was too much trouble for them’.

Flexibility was key and Jess could now sell and supply with extra confidence that a big piece was in place.

Bad Customer Service would’ve put me off even if the cashflow-easy ordering options were in place.

‘Having a supplier that’s responsive, patient and sees the big picture plays a major part in scaling up’.

What’s Next?

Further expansion is obviously on-the-cards, but many larger supermarkets are hesitant on range expansion in the current climate. However, discussions continue and it’s a case of ‘watch this space’ for further news.

The big the ambitions for Banana Scoops going forwards? ‘Bananas everywhere!’ laughs Jess. Increased distribution and accessibility is the goal.

I’d like a tub of Banana Scoops to be just 5 minutes from anyone. I’m expanding the range and then of course we want to sell outside of the UK’ she states.

Valuable Advice

Aside from the belief in self and product, what advice would Jess give someone considering a brave new venture too? Does it simply just come down to grueling, hard work?

Well, patience and focus I suppose’ she offers. ‘I know things moved very fast and we scored well early, but generally everything just takes longer than you’d expect.

‘Being resilient and persevering while you wait is important, to keep pushing on. I don’t mean that just in terms of hours put in or grind, but returning to your supporters to keep in touch with your motives when you need to.

‘Or, if you start to lose sight a little, to hear from other believers.

‘But also to just work smart, by concentrating only on your priorities, on only what’s important to moving the needle’.

Well, you can always have guilt-free ice cream for breakfast so that must help!

Our hat’s off to a remarkable young woman who’s setting a great example to others and bringing a genuine, unique product to the market with all the right brand values.

What is your ‘why?’ and when will you take the leap? Cup Print are here and ready to listen and help with a flexible, supportive ear when you do. Thanks to Jess Salamanca and Banana Scoops.

• MOQ Just 1000 pcs

• Ready for Delivery in 15 Days

• Recyclable Models Available

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