Supermarket gives its backing to small Scottish firm

Supermarket gives its backing to small Scottish firm

A Scottish supermarket has given its support to a new bottling facility dedicated to overcoming the challenges in getting small batch craft sodas manufactured.

Scotmid Co-operative has invested in The Start-Up Drinks Lab.

Borne out of sheer frustration at the lack of accessible production facilities for small batch soft drinks, The Start-Up Drinks Lab was founded last year by Hannah Fisher and Craig Strachan.

The Start Up Drinks Lab co-founders, Hannah Fisher and Craig Strachan

It will specialise in contract manufacturing specifically for craft sodas with the business officially opening its doors in May with a new production facility in Kelburn Business Park, Port Glasgow.

The company will offer five key services – product development in the trial kitchen, manufacturing, packaging, storage and distribution. The distribution includes both a dedicated e-shop which will showcase the best hard-to-find craft sodas from around the world as well as in-market distribution within the off and on trade through a selection of distributors both in the UK and abroad.

John Brodie, CEO of Scotmid Co-operative said: ‘Complimentary diversification is a key element of the growth plans of Scotmid. In Hannah and Craig we have found two young entrepreneurial business people who share many of our co-operative values and our vision of helping other businesses.

The Start-Up Drinks Lab in Port Glasgow

‘We are delighted to be able to offer both financial and business support – vital for them at this key start up stage. We look forward to working with them over the coming years and watching them grow and develop into another successful Scottish business.’

Craig Strachan said: ‘The backing from Scotmid gives us excellent support through the initial start-up phase of our business. We have already developed a close working relationship with John and his senior management team.’

Hannah Fisher added: ‘They believe in what we are trying to achieve and they share our vision in being able to offer soft drink brand owners a service which encompasses everything from concept through to shelf.’

The services created are specially targeted at helping both the craft soda brand owner and those businesses where a bespoke soda brand will benefit their core business (luxury hoteliers, retailers and venues).

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