Snac World - Official State of the Industry 2021 - 18

HOW TO GET
INVOLVED
WITH
EMERGE
Utilizing the SNAC International - Emerge
partnership, SNAC members identified as emerging
brands can access one free year of membership with
Emerge. This allows companies to take advantage
of educational sessions, on-demand learning and
networking to help scale their businesses.
" The goal is to not overwhelm the team with
too many resources at once, " said Julie Pryor,
chief executive officer of Emerge. " That's why the
membership is for 12 months, so we can prioritize
resources and phase them in. This ensures that we
can build a strong foundation and scale the company
sustainably. "
Not only do members get access to the
educational and networking opportunities, but there
is also a public LinkedIn community - Emerge
Learning and Networking Community - to help
members stay current on industry news and trends,
and where team celebrations are shared and
amplified.
SNAC International members who aren't emerging
can also participate as a mentor. Mentors volunteer
10 to 12 hours each year to guide a member team
through any challenges it may have. Mentors span all
categories: ingredient suppliers, co-manufacturers,
brand strategists, investors, distributors, sales
management leaders, e-commerce gurus, CPG
experts and more.
" We make mentor and peer member connections
for each team that align with their business needs
and challenges, so that ideally each connection
enables teams to take the next step in reaching one
of their growth goals, " Ms. Pryor said.
Industry leaders can also engage with the Emerge
Network as a sponsor or affiliate partner. These
engagement roles provide industry leaders with
the opportunity to welcome each member team
into to the community and set up a consultation to
review their business goals and challenges. Through
partnerships with Emerge and mentoring, companies
can actively guide and support emerging businesses
to thrive and become enduring brands. Emerge
will be exhibiting at SNAXPO in the " Emerge Hub "
booth. For information on how to take advantage
of the SNAC - Emerge partnerhip, contact David
Walsh, SNAC vice president, membership and
communications, at dwalsh@snacintl.org.
18
SNAC WORLD 2021
what comes to mind are the teams who made decisions to
support how and where their core consumers were shopping,
while keeping their bigger growth goals in mind, " said
Julie Pryor, chief executive officer of Emerge. " They were
able to be creative with their business strategies, pivot
quickly and adjust as the year went on. They embraced the
unknown and focused on being solutions-oriented. "
Much of that adaptation was around channels and innovation.
As new products were put on hold and shelf space
evaporated in favor of established brands, smaller companies
looked to e-commerce as a place to build a following.
" Those companies that had commitments pre-pandemic
for major distribution that were honored and could use
social media to connect with consumers came out of
2020 stronger than expected, " said Rob Sarlls, CEO and
president of Marion, Ohio-based Wyandot Snacks, which
co-manufactures for some emerging brands as well as
larger companies. " They did all the right things and were
able to execute on what they already had in their plans. "
The companies he saw struggling were those that tried
to do much of their work during the first half of 2020,
whether that was to launch a new product or brand or
raise capital.
" But time is the enemy when you're trying to do something
new. You want to get it out there. You want to hit the
mark, get the splash, get excitement. If you didn't get to
first base, it's kind of tough to go back to your group and
say, 'We had the right idea, just timing was rotten,' " he
explained. " Some of those companies will come back, and
some of them won't. "
While companies trying to get off the ground in spring
2020 may have struggled the most, those who were innovating
seemed to just put those plans on hold, from the
viewpoint of Greg Pearson, CEO, Pretzels Inc., Bluffton, Ind.,
another co-manufacturer that works with these brands.
" There may have been a short-term disruption last
spring, but beyond that, we saw brands continue to innovate,
and consumers were hungry for it, " he said. " We saw
some huge growth behind the disruptive brands last year. "
Much of that ability to keep innovating, said Karl Brown,
president and founder of Hatboro, Pa.-based Pretzel Pete,
can be attributed to the pandemic. Lack of travel gave everyone
time to think.
" Everything slowed down, not in terms of our business
but in regard to time, " he explained. " I wasn't traveling
for business; staff members weren't taking vacations. We
were all here operating the business. That allowed us time
to reenergize our own brand and look at what we should
be doing. "
And then there was also the pivot to online. While snack
giants gobbled up shelf space, smaller companies turned
to e-commerce and social media to keep up sales and
consumer connection.

Snac World - Official State of the Industry 2021

Table of Contents for the Digital Edition of Snac World - Official State of the Industry 2021

Snac World - Official State of the Industry 2021 - Intro
Snac World - Official State of the Industry 2021 - 1
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