The popularity of plant-based foods is undeniable. With the U.S. retail sales reaching $7.4 billion in 2021 and a record 62% of consumers purchasing plant-based foods in retail markets, distribution and foodservice demand for plant-based options is growing as well.
At Dot Foods’ recent Innovation Tradeshow, the power of plant-based foods was on full display thanks to the incredible presence of so many PBFA members and plant-based food companies. Dot Foods, the largest food industry redistributor in North America, hosted the event in St. Louis which garnered over 2,634 customers, suppliers, operators, and employees hungry to learn more about trends and network with fellow industry leaders. The tradeshow was a crucial opportunity for food companies, including many PBFA members, to meet with their Dot sales representatives and national account operators to discuss opportunities to grow their business.
PBFA’s Senior Director of Impact Strategies Sabina Vyas attended the show to connect with PBFA members and discuss their goals and strategies in foodservice. Understanding the foodservice and distribution landscape is a key component of PBFA’s marketplace development work. With the challenges and supply network disruptions of the past few years, foodservice opportunities have waned for many companies. Though Dot works closely with large retailers, our goal is to help assess barriers and provide solutions to enable our startup members to develop their foodservice capabilities and support established brands as they transition back into a foodservice.
In addition to educational programming and networking opportunities, the Dot Foods Innovations show featured product sampling. Sabina connected with PBFA members and was heartened by the collaboration and support demonstrated on the showfloor.
PBFA Member Opportunities with Dot
Foodservice and distribution play a crucial role in helping plant-based food companies scale. From our perspective, plant-based eating is the future – and we aim to play a pivotal role driving transformation to a food system that centers around producing plant-based foods and promoting plant-based diets. Given the significant environmental, health, and social justice benefits of plant-based foods, paired with the incredible strides that are happening in product innovation, we are confident that delicious plant-based foods will increasingly be viewed as a necessary component of any foodservice menu.
In March 2020, PBFA launched an official partnership with Dot to accelerate plant-based food access for consumers. Dot serves as a connector to major operators, distributors, and retailers, allowing plant-based food manufacturers to get their foods to new markets that would have otherwise been difficult to reach.
“One-third of Millennial and Gen Z customers look for plant-based options when dining out and we only expect this trajectory to grow as awareness around the benefits for personal and planetary health increases,” said Sabina. “Our partnership with Dot Foods makes it easy for restaurants, dining halls, and other foodservice operators to serve the delicious plant-based foods consumers want. A win for plant-based food companies, foodservice providers, and distributors.”
PBFA members who are interested in working with Dot can gain enhanced access to their natural and specialty team that works with members to evaluate and assist with distribution needs.
We look forward to continuing our work with Dot to ensure plant-based foods are broadly available everywhere consumers eat.
For more information on PBFA’s partnership with Dot, contact PBFA’s Senior Manager, Member Relations Maddie Segal at firstname.lastname@example.org.