UCook and Faithful to Nature (FTN), both part of the Silvertree Brands stable, have acquired fresh produce e-tailer Granadilla Eats. Through the deal, UCook and Faithful to Nature will be able to offer locally-sourced fresh produce on a much larger, national scale.
Initially a swimwear brand, Granadilla famously pivoted in just 48 hours, adapting its business model to focus on groceries instead when the Covid-19 pandemic and related restrictions hit home in South Africa in March 2021. Granadilla had identified the need for reliable, home-delivery of fresh produce, as well as the vital assistance required to keep smaller food-producing businesses in operation.
Unlocking opportunities for small-scale producers
Granadilla Eats cofounder Hannah Duxbury explains the acquisition as a route-to-market for many small, local food operations that would not necessarily have access to the kind of scale or opportunity the deal affords.
Cofounder Adam Duxbury adds, "This partnership will unlock so much more value for the small-scale farms and small businesses we built Granadilla Eats for. Our small effort to provide a platform has just been amplified by the awesome UCook and FTN teams."
Peter Allerstorfer, UCook CEO, comments, “This acquisition of Granadilla Eats continues our focus on showcasing the incredible work farmers and food producers do in our communities. By supporting regenerative farming practices we can work towards revolutionising our local food system and have a meaningful impact on communities and people's livelihoods.”
UCook, best known for its weekly meal-kit delivery service, also launched a fresh produce offering
in 2020, named the UCook Market Box – but as lockdown conditions eased, so the brand returned to focusing on its core offering as well as new launches in the frozen category
and baby foods.
The new offering will leverage all three brands’ substantial network of small-scale food growers and producers to further provide a lifeline for companies and communities that rely on these businesses for survival.
Allerstorfer says that a key focus for the company this year is to continue adding complementary services and offerings to the platform, beyond the successful meal-kit subscription service.