Forager, based in Portland, Maine, has achieved new growth milestones – including the additions of independent grocers to its network to fuel the local food economy and expansion into new geographies. Changes in consumer preferences have driven a ramp up in adoption of local food, and grocers need a partner like Forager to manage the complex supply chains at the local level to meet customer demands.
A recent Forager survey shows 93 percent of Americans think grocers have an important role to play in supporting local farmers and food producers.
Several independent grocers, including The Common Bond Market, Solo Italiano, Mountain View Market Co-op and Pemberton Farms Marketplace, have signed up to increase the amount of local food they source while offloading the supply chain process, from procurement to payment, to Forager. In addition, Forager recently announced a partnership with Roche Bros. Markets, a regional Boston grocery chain. These partnerships have allowed the company to expand into new markets, including expansion in Greater Boston and New York City and entry into New Mexico.
“A more in-depth look into Forager has made me realize that, as far as growing our local program goes, Forager is the obvious next step,” said Forest Miller, assistant general manager of Pemberton Farms Marketplace.
“Without Forager, grocers who want to expand local struggle with inefficient ordering processes and difficult program management, and many end up relying on distributors who shrink local producer margins dramatically,” said Joe Blunda, CEO of Forager. “To meet consumer demand for the freshest, healthiest food, grocers need to build direct supplier relationships – Forager enables them to do just that. We’re excited to continue our growth trajectory as more and more innovative grocers place their bets on local and the value of building a strong local supply chain.”
As the company continues its momentum, Forager has achieved a number of major milestones, including:
- Operating in 13 states;
- Operating in more than 40 grocery stores;
- More than 50 new vendors across both fresh and non-perishable supplier and product base;
- Over 60 percent average time savings using Forager over ordering local products via phone, text, fax and other outdated slow methods; and
- Eleven percent average increase in volume for grocers of healthy, local products including meat, seafood and produce.
The company also has partnered with The BGJ Group’s Mark Doiron to help build relationships with larger grocers interested in Forager’s capabilities and partnership. As a former executive at Hannaford Brothers/Delhaize America, Sure Winner Foods and Fresh Thyme Markets, Doiron brings extensive experience in the retail grocery environment, while The BGJ Group opens the door to extended networks and invaluable mentorship and counsel.
For more information on Forager’s digital pipeline for local food, visit: goforager.com