From a first-time sale with a freshly gained distributor to record sales at a trade show, we celebrate the many paths of success achieved by our participating companies exporting from the U.S.
In just a couple of years Vet Worthy’s exports have gone from zero to now shipping to over half a dozen countries with a half dozen more pending. Global Trade Specialist for Vet Worthy, Leigh Laney, loves the help the program provides for brochures, booth design and labels, “I cannot say enough good things about this program and how it helps small, young companies like Vet Worthy to be competitive on the globe. WUSATA has helped us to start our export program and add new distributors in multiple countries.” Vet Worthy is already shipping orders to Saudi Arabia, Bahrain, Hong Kong and Korea and orders to Malaysia and several others pending. Now that Vet Worthy has sunk their teeth into Asia they may be looking across the Atlantic as they’ve recently participated in FundMatch once again, this time for InterZoo in Germany.
The FundMatch program enabled Salty Wahine to attend the Winter and Summer Fancy Foods Shows and the Food & Beverage Show in Tokyo by matching marketing and travel expenses for the spice and seasoning company.
“We received quite a few direct sales through the events. We are also in discussions with 2 large distributors who found us at the shows,” says owner Laura Cristobal Andersland. “One distributor is considering a pallet of bulk product so they can repackage and distribute into retail stores in Japan.” Andersland adds, the international success of the company has been tremendous and WUSATA has been a big part of that, especially with assistance for the shows (which Salty Wahine would not go to if not for WUSATA’s FundMatch). “It was fantastic. We had a great time there. Many people coming to the shows were specifically looking for us.”
The big attraction of trade shows for customers is having so many companies in one place, and for the companies, well its all the potential customers of course. Seaton Smith, President at GF Harvest has been working with WUSATA for several years. The continued work with WUSATA, over the years, has helped them to break into the Australian market and after this years attendance to Expo West, they may have some increased business with a European customer. “we reconnected with a European customer who has done business with us on the bulk side. We are currently in discussions about a potential new product and we are trying to work out pricing now.” By participating in FundMatch and making it to the event, GF Harvest is now able to continue finding new customers and extend their customer service to current clients.
Sometimes growing takes a little guidance and that’s what the Western United States Agricultural Trade Association (WUSATA) has been able to do for Airfield Estate Winery. With vines dating back to the 1960’s, Airfield Estates Winery sits in the heart of Washington State and has been a part of the Miller family since the beginning. Global Sales Manager, Brad Potter, says right now the winery is doing about 12% of its business in exports. Adding, for most small wineries that number is closer to 2-3%. “From 1,400 cases in 2016 to 3,500 cases in 2017 to all our export markets. Without WUSATA, we wouldn’t be exporting at all. We wouldn’t even be looking at it as an option.” Potter says the exporting also means much more, “We are now a global company rather than a national company. It’s a source of pride for us, but more importantly, it’s extra income for our company.”
WUSATA’s Global Connect allows CJB GROUP to find the time to meet with several international markets and clients at once through missions and tradeshows saving time and money.
Companies like CJB GROUP can participate in Global Connect in a variety of ways. At international tradeshows they can use the WUSATA Pavilion which President and CEO of CJB GROUP , Bryan Kim says attracts potential customers that already know the WUSATA name. “The key value with WUSATA is that we were able to go back for a second trip. We attended the 2018 WUSATA Pavilion at Food & Hotel Asia Trade Show and met a good set of buyers. We are following up and connecting with the buyers and sellers now.” With the continued connections from 2017 and 2018, Kim is seeing excellent growth in the Korean market, their primary focus. “We are on track to grow 200% from last year. We have expanded our partners and potential buyer network by 55% and are in negotiations with roughly 10-15 partner groups we met through WUSATA.” The expansion in the international markets has coincided with the increase in US suppliers as well from 2 to 45 meaning even a wider product line to introduce at the next WUSATA Global Connect activity.
With Western United States Agricultural Trade Association’s (WUSATA) Global Connect Program funded by the USDA's Market Access Program (MAP), small businesses can be all around the world all the time. For FlapJacked, that means participating to connect with in-country partners established through WUSATA to get their brand out at trade shows in places like Australia. It also means communicating with those international connections and meeting face-to-face to better understand their markets and how they operate.
International Sales Manager, Geoffrey Wanamaker, in his trips to Australia was able to see firsthand how grocery stores operate in different countries. “You can’t assume that everything is similar to the U.S. When you see the stores, it gives you the understanding of how you can penetrate those markets even more.