As a licensed business in Chicago, we currently operate out of The Hatchery, a food and beverage incubator located in the city. The facility is maintained to the highest standards including recordkeeping requirements. Please contact us if you have any further/more detailed questions.
What about food safety?
Our co-founders have completed industry food safety and processing certification, including the Better Process Control School certification, Preventive Controls Qualified Individual (PCQI) Certification, and Good Manufacturing Practices Certification.
For all of our manufacturing, where a food is considered acidified food, we obtain processing authority review of our manufacturing/re-packaging process.
Can you work with products prior to retail distribution?
Yes, we can work with you to ensure that we are able to produce a set of samples in a food-safe manner, and we can distribute those samples on your website and ours to ensure that we are able to test or "prime" the market prior to your retail distribution going live. This sampling data can also be used as supporting data for use in your sales effort with retailers and distributors.
What kind of products can you work with?
Our key value proposition to the consumer is that we allow consumers to taste a product in an individual serving size that is only sold in multi-serving sizes on the retail shelf.
Liquids (Viscous/Non Viscous)
We can work with all liquid or viscous products that can be pumped. This means liquid or viscous products with small size particles. This includes everything from molasses (very viscous), to hot sauce (very liquid). Any liquid including firm particles larger than a fine dice would unfortunately not be able to be pumped. Examples : BBQ Sauce, Hot Sauce, Ketchup, Dressings, Seasoning sauces (ethnic sauces such as soy), Nut butters or other breakfast spreads, ingredients such as molasses.
We work with most free flowing dry powders and ingredients from spice mixes up to and including coffee beans/kindey bean sized components. Note that in spice mixes, there are components that will need anti caking agents or alternatives to ensure free flow. For example, granulated brown sugar instead of fine brown sugar. We can also package items which are small clusters such as granola. Examples : Spice Mixes, BBQ Rubs, Seasonings, Coffee, Tea, Ingredients such as beans, Granola etc.
What services (labeling, design etc) do you provide?
Currently* we provide labeling and pouch packaging design services free of cost. This includes laying out your brand design and brand characteristics on our pouch packaging template . We do this on the house, as this allows a consistency of design language in our final product which improves the consumer experience.
Do you sell my retail product on your website?
Not exactly. Our website is set up to encourage purchase from your brand. This could be offline (in retail channels) or online (on your website/amazon). We do not sell direct to consumer as this could be a retail nightmare.
However, we are launching a new offering that includes a d2c retail purchase. These are exceptions and primarily consumers who try your product will be going through your preferred retail channels to purchase that product.
How do you represent my brand online and in the sample box?
Consumers want to know who made their food. They want to know the person behind the brand, not just the company.
To facilitate this, we include your founder and the brand story on our website to help consumers to understand your brand. We also include links to your website and social media so they can dive deeper if they so wish. We also include inserts in every sample box so that consumers when they taste the product offline can learn about the founders and are incentivized to purchase.
Do I have to provide a coupon code for the final purchase?
No - however, we highly recommend it, to incentivize consumers to purchase directly through you. We believe that this is a small investment against the Lifetime Value of the consumer to your brand.
What kind of data can I get?
We ask consumers for feedback. That feedback will include any comments they provide on your brand, and that will be provided back to you at set intervals (e.g. monthly). We also provide links to your website and social media from our website and any signups that the consumer completes at that time is owned by your brand.
What intangible benefits can you offer?
• Ability to “see” a trial of your finished samples before you place an order
• Ongoing access to design and packaging iterations as your business grows
• Business Development opportunities through NakiNoku’s network of experts in the retail and science space of all things food!
• Mentorship, support plus technical expertise on food packaging from the NakiNoku team
Can I offer sampling through my website?
Yes! This is one of the major benefits of working with us. Our research shows that consumers often abandon carts due to the cost of shipping, which can double the total cost of the purchase. We believe one of the most effective ways to capture that customer is to offer a sample box. This allows customers to taste your product without committing to a large multi-serving size of one flavor and is an enticing offer.
When you are ready to offer this on your website, we can work directly with you to implement this on your website. The best part of this is that all inventory and fulfillment is handled by NakiNoku!
Do you only do sample boxes with other brands included?
Our "sample boxes" come in two varieties, sample boxes that include many brands of one kind of product (e.g. spicy bbq sauces) and sample boxes that include all varieties of one brand's products. All brands have the option of creating their own variety box, however, we also will include your brand's products in the traditional sample boxes with multiple brands because we have to offer consumers value.
Food discovery requires us to provide multiple samples together to entice the consumer, however this should not be looked as a winner takes all situation. Every consumer is different. Some will prefer spicier sauces, some will prefer milder sauces. So this is simply a way for you to identify the ideal consumer for your brand, not a competition between brands for a trophy!
This prevents the worst case scenario - a consumer purchasing a specific variety of your sauce, only to find it doesnt match their taste profile (when another of your varieties may have), and that consumer never tries any of your other varieties. You effectively lost that customer advocate for life, and the customer loses out on the opportunity to try an amazing product!
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