Friday, March 15, 2013

News: Organic growth for Vitalife 


Rotherham-based healthy tea specialist, Vitalife Teas, is unlikely to find itself in hot water when trading in foreign markets thanks to help and support from from RiDO's (Rotherham investment Development Office) Soft Landing Zone project.

Established in 2010 by health fanatic and serial entrepreneur Gavin Edley, Vitalife has since become one of the most popular brands of matcha green tea in the UK. The company has grown and added eight new "teas with purpose" to their range followed by recently adding the popular, energising, South American tea "Yerba Mate."

The next stage of growth includes expanding into new overseas markets and supplying certified organic products.

Vitalife expanded into RiDO's Fusion@Magna business centre in Templeborough in March 2012 and has benefited from support from the ERDF-funded Soft Landing Zone project. This has included research and support in developing contacts with international markets.

This has already led to sales secured with consumers and retailers in Germany, France and Australia and the project is also looking into opportunities to set up a distributorship in the US and Poland.

Gavin Edley managing director of Vitalife Teas (pictured above, right), said: "We have had some great support from RiDO to identify new markets and to research opportunities in Europe, the US and Australia. We are also working with RiDO to establish a distributor network outside of Europe. Their help has been vital in putting us in contact with organisations such as UKTI and with trade associations in specific countries.

"We see tremendous market opportunities internationally for our products and are really excited what the future holds for us."

Under the Soft Landings programme assistance has been provided around; the UK legislation necessary to setting up a limited company; UK food hygiene regulations, potential equipment suppliers, and researching potential customers.

Building on two decades of successful delivery of incubation programmes and inward investment, the SLZ programme has attracted investment from the European Regional Development Fund (ERDF).

As well as supporting local exporters, assistance is also given to overseas companies looking to establish operations in the UK, explore the UK market or to use the UK as a base for further European activities.

Bob Langley, business development co-ordinator for RiDO, said: "Gavin has a superb product, which is unlike any other in the market, because of its health benefits. We are finding great opportunities for him across the globe, where he has already made a number of sales. We have provided support with a proactive export strategy and assisting with setting up a distributorship outside Europe, to further enhance Vitalife Teas' growth internationally."

Closer to home, Vitalife has recently been awarded certification by the Soil Association to develop and market organic goods and have already celebrated this with the launch of new organic matcha green tea and organic coconut oil. Edley, added: "Despite the fact that all of our matcha green tea is grown in pesticide-free environments, some customers are willing to pay that little bit extra for the reassurance of certification to prove this.

"We have many more organic products planned throughout 2013. With our move into the wider health products market, our new organic certification will prove a valuable asset to drive our business and product range forward and establish our brand even further as an all-natural consumer favourite."

Vitalife website
RiDO website

Images: RiDO


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