When nutrition bar companies are ready to move on to a new co-packer, it is a big decision.
Co-packers can become ingrained in the brand, the business, and the formulas, so removing them from the process can seem like a daunting and unpleasant task. What's more, after you've decided to break up with your current co-packer, you need to navigate the necessary steps to find and partner with a new co-packer, and one that hopefully will be the right fit for your business well into the future.
Whether you are an established brand or a growing nutrition bar company, this process doesn't have to disrupt your whole business.
What to Expect When Changing Protein Bar Co-Packers
The following steps will help ensure your transition to a new co-packer goes as smoothly as possible.
From letting your current co-packer know you intend on leaving to selecting the right co-packer for you moving forward, understanding the phases you'll go through when developing a partnership with a co-packer to scale your healthy energy bar formula and grow your brand will prove to be invaluable in your transition process.
Notify Your Current Co-Packer
When transitioning to a new co-packer, the first step is to notify your current co-packer that you won't be resigning your contract. Businesses should take the time to explain to the current co-packer why they have decided to move on, whether it be due to cost, flexibility, growth, available certifications, or something else entirely. Having this conversation will ensure the co-packing relationship ends on good terms.
Schedule The Final Production Run
Brands should talk with their current co-packer about setting up a final production run at the facility. This will ensure businesses don't end up with a gap in their manufacturing services, which could lead to a loss in revenue.
Once the final run is scheduled, make arrangements to move any materials housed at the co-packer's facility to an in-house or storage location.
Prepare Your Formulas and Processes for Your New Co-Packer
To ensure a smooth transition to a new energy bar co-packer, businesses want to clearly define the ingredient list, processes, and special instructions that a new co-packer will need to know. Especially with well-established brands who are switching co-packers, having all this information easily accessible helps prevent interruptions in the production and distribution of their nutrition bars. It's also just as important to document any packaging specifications that the new co-packer will need.
A good co-packer should have all of the necessary materials and instructions already. However, some co-packers may be in the habit of doing something a certain way, but haven't gone the extra step of documenting it, so make sure everything is spelled out before you cut ties with your current co-packer.
Choose Your New Co-Packer
Don't rush during the process of choosing a new co-packer. Consider what caused you to find a new co-packer in the first place, and see if you can address these issues when deciding on your next co-packing partner.
Think about any issues that caused you to be unhappy with the previous co-packer. Were there scheduling issues? Was the co-packer lacking in certifications or industry experience? Were they hard to communicate with? Answering these questions can help businesses understand how to choose the right nutrition bar co-packer for their brand. Equip yourself with the knowledge and key considerations to look for when interviewing potential snack bar co-packing facilities.
Since you have already been working with a co-packer, you should have a good grasp on the basics and your brand's wants and needs from a co-packer. Effectively communicating that essential information to new co-packers will help narrow down your list. You will also want to ask questions and ensure you understand each co-packer's processes and offerings to make the best decision.
Be Prepared for Differences
Nutrition bar companies change co-packers because they want things to be different, right? So, expect positive changes after transitioning to a new co-packer.
If brands did their homework before signing on with a new co-packer, there shouldn't be any surprises in expectations, but there could still be some growing pains. Take these in stride, and communicate regularly with your co-packer to mitigate the chances of any unexpected factors coming up.
Finding the Right Co-Packer for Your Nutrition Bar Brand
Partnering with the right, experienced co-packer can help bring your nutrition bars to market, so you can begin seeing solid returns for your hard work and investments.
Taking the step to leave your current co-packer and choosing one that aligns more with your products and goals may seem like an overwhelming process. By following the steps - from communicating with your current co-packer, to preparing everything for the new copacker, to choosing the new co-packer - a business can ensure the transition will go smoothly. With a new co-packer, brands can have more time to focus on growing their energy bar business rather than worrying about their co-packer.