Albertsons Companies announced its first Albertsons Innovation Launchpad competition in search of small and independent brands representing emerging specialty food, beverage, and pet products.
With this competition, Albertsons allows new, innovative businesses to apply and compete live at the Natural Products Expo West in California on Mar. 8.
A panel of judges will evaluate 60 applicants presenting products that reflect growing consumer interest in areas such as low sugar or carb, all-natural, plant-based products, functional beverages, global flavors, healthy prepared meals, and premium pet items.
The top three winners will receive prizes valued at $170,000, including cash, services, and industry recognition.
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“We envision the Albertsons Innovation Launchpad competition to be a fun and engaging way to connect with up-and-coming entrepreneurs and brands,” said Jen Saenz, EVP and Chief Merchandising Officer at Albertsons Cos. “We’re always looking to provide our customers fresh, innovative products and new meal ideas. Through this process, we hope to discover unique items that can be considered for distribution in any of our banner stores.”
The top winners will be considered for distribution in Albertsons Companies banner stores, including Albertsons, Safeway, Jewel-Osco, Shaw’s, ACME, Pavilions, Kings Food Markets, Balducci’s Food Lovers Market, and Market Street.
Applications for the Albertsons Innovation Launchpad are being accepted through Jan. 31. For more information on the competition for independent brands or to apply, visit rangeme.com/albertsonsinnovationlaunchpad23.
In addition, registration is open until January 23 for minority business owners to participate in the annual application process for certified diverse-owned suppliers.
The application process is open to certified diverse-owned suppliers. These include individual, small and medium-sized businesses that are at least 51% owned, controlled, and operated by women, blacks, Native Americans and people of color, LGBTQ+, veterans, or people with disabilities who can offer products that appeal to the varied tastes and preferences of a diverse customer base.
Qualified diverse business owners interested in having their products considered must submit their application online at rangeme.com/albertsonsdiversityprogram23 by January 23.