HAWAII FOODSERVICE ALLIANCE & MANA UP PARTNER TO GROW DISTRIBUTION OF LOCAL FOOD & BEVERAGE PRODUCTS
Collaboration is a key element of HFA joining Mana Up as Founder partner
Hawaii Foodservice Alliance (HFA) joins Mana Up as a Founder level partner to help local food and beverage product businesses as they reach new levels of growth. HFA, a locally owned and operated statewide food distributor, will lay the foundation for a program for companies scaling globally that need broader product distribution and guidance on logistical support.
Together, Mana Up and HFA will provide guidance for local food and beverage companies looking to increase their distribution within Hawaiʻi and beyond. The program will include mentorship on how to scale up distribution as well as create an on-ramp to working with HFA. Additionally, HFA will offer services to assist in overseas shipping and logistics, helping Hawaiʻi-based companies to expand their offerings to the continental United States.
“We understand that many small businesses may not have the resources or tools to get their products beyond their respective island and that’s where HFA comes in,” says Chad Buck, owner and CEO of HFA. “While we currently support nearly 40 Hawai‘i manufacturers, we plan to grow that through our partnership with Mana Up, as we know that investing in Hawai‘i’s small businesses contributes to generating economic success for our local communities.”
“A key challenge Mana Up companies experience is how to economically and scalably distribute their products across the Hawaiian Islands and beyond. With a distribution partner in HFA, we’re creating direction for our earlier stage companies and distribution capabilities for our later stage companies. HFA brings a core competency that will significantly contribute to our mission of strengthening our local product sector,” says Meli James, co-founder of Mana Up.
Will Davis, founder of Vitalitea Kombucha and participant in Mana Upʻs cohort 5, joined up with HFA earlier this year to expand distribution within Hawaii and to the West Coast. Vitalitea crafts high quality kombucha and nitro cold brew coffee using fresh cold-pressed locally sourced organic fruits, roots, and herbs.
“Finding a company that could support our cold chain logistics and food safety program was essential as we increase our sales channels,” says Will Davis, founder of Vitalitea Hawaii. “HFA will play a key role in helping to create better efficiencies across our business and will allow us to bring the freshest cans of our kombucha and cold brew products to customers in Hawai‘i and beyond.”
HFA and Mana Up are aiming to create many more of these examples as they continue their work together.