Convenience-store chain Alltown Fresh is partnering with online wholesaler Mable to bring healthful specialty products from local farms, bakeries and other vendors to its on-the-go customers.
Mable’s online platform offers more than 3,000 emerging brands from local artisanal vendors, helping retail customers support their communities along the way.
"We are really excited about this partnership," said Joshua Smith, vice president at Waltham, Mass.-based Alltown Fresh. "Mable is such an amazing innovation, giving small manufacturers access to broader distribution."
Alltown Fresh’s category managers are able to source new products through Mable’s app and online interface, while at the same time receiving recommendations from the company’s in-house wholesale experts. Mable’s drop-shipping model also helps brands ship inventory directly to all 12 Alltown Fresh locations, which the company says makes for greater flexibility for both buyers and brands.
"We're thrilled to see Alltown Fresh creating a path for customers to interact with local, emerging and better-for-you products in their day-to-day lives,” said Arik Keller, CEO and founder of Boston-headquartered Mable. Convenience-store formats have lagged consumer demand for locally sourced, healthy foods. When we make it easy for customers to support local and emerging businesses, the entire supply chain wins."
The Mable model prioritizes local, fresh brands over traditional CPG brands that have historically dominated the space.
“I am thrilled to have the opportunity to sell Dak Bars at the Alltown Fresh locations," said Susie Smith, owner and operator of Dak Bar, which makes energy bars in Essex, N.Y. "Being located on their shelves will allow my brand to receive greater visibility throughout the Northeast and will be a huge help in building my brand.”
The trend to tap into fresh local merchandise reaches across the entire food retailing spectrum, from 12-unit Alltown Fresh to 2,700-store industry leader Kroger and its recent Go Fresh & Local Supplier Accelerator.