Capturing new leads with tasty plant-based offering pays off

Dec 9, 2021

When KG Foods tested the waters with a pre-launch of a new brand at the 2021 Naturally Good Expo, the reaction to the mouth-watering free samples was so good that people didn’t want to move from their stand.

Debuting a new brand originating in Singapore called ALTN (taste the alternate), KG Foods gave away samples of plant-based Asian fare products including dumplings, siu mai and chicken rice, as well as Italian bolognaise.

“We wanted to gather feedback from people at the show as to the taste of the products as this has been a good exercise for us in previous years with other products,” says KG Foods Brand Director Divya Raghunath.

“The reaction was incredibly positive. Some people just hung around the stand for ages trying everything and there were quite a few repeat tasters that kept coming back saying they loved how authentic everything tasted. That was quite crucial to hear given that the product is from Singapore as it’s helped us understand the way we should be marketing the product.”

Divya says a lot of buyers expressed interest in the products and as a result, they got quite a few leads from independents. “The product is now due for launch early next year with the IGAS, some of whom sampled the product at the show, so it’s been really worthwhile.”

A growing portfolio

Divya also founded Puresoul Foods (part of KG Foods) in 2019, as a brand that inspires a more conscious lifestyle and wholesome life print encouraging people to make positive changes to their lives and offers a range of grass-fed New Zealand ghees and gluten free pulses. Having first attended the expo that year with a 6sqm stand, KG Foods will be exhibiting in 2022 with their range on a 22sqm stand.

She says that ghee – a form of clarified butter created by skimming the milk solids out of melted butter – has been around for centuries, but it’s only in the last few years that it’s really taken off as a health food alternative.

“Ghee has a high melting point so unlike butter, it doesn’t burn in cooking, and as there’s no smoke it retains its flavour. Burnt butter isn’t good as it can be carcinogenic. Ghee is also high in butyric acid which is good for gut health. It’s really risen in popularity thanks to the keto diet and many celebrities and fitness experts are fans.

“When we first exhibited our ghee in 2019 the brand hadn’t officially launched yet, so we wondered how the show would pan out for us. However, we talked to a lot of people and got some really valuable insights. We had buyers from Coles, Priceline and health food stores interested. As one thing lead to another, we are now in Costco selling a ghee twin pack which is doing incredibly well. The brand is now turning over $1 million.

What’s next?

Next year, amongst their other products, KG Foods intends to showcase an existing range of theirs called Sashi’s Secret – ready to make Asian meal kits. Devised with 2018 Masterchef winner Sashi Cheliah, the range has been around for three years now. “It has already been quite popular with supermarkets such as Woolworths and Drake’s. However, we will be expanding our plans to find additional distributors and buyers.

“The biggest challenge for either new brands or established ones is placement and exposure. As much as possible, your products need to be seen by people as who can take them futher. So, showcasing at an expo – whether you are a small operator or large one doesn’t matter – as long as you have a good product you will have people relevant to your industry inquiring, which can really reap benefits for your business.”

Interested in exhibiting? Naturally Good returns to Sydney 6-7 June 2022. Contact the team for more information.

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