Wide Open Agriculture (ASX: WOA) has received its first sales order for the distribution of newly-launched dairy-free and plant-based milk alternative OatUP to new markets along Australia’s east coast.
The order was placed by food and drinks company The Market Grocer for sales to independent specialty grocers and major supermarkets in New South Wales and Victoria.
It follows initial trials this month of the carbon-neutral oat milk – sold under Wide Open’s Dirty Clean Food brand – which was designed to evaluate customer interest and market opportunities.
Initial east coast presence
Chief executive officer Jay Albany said the new deal gives Wide Open an initial presence along the east coast which could materially accelerate OatUP sales given the large population base.
“After a strong launch in WA and South Australia six months ago, we are excited to have a new partner to expand the availability of OatUP into the eastern states,” he said.
The Market Grocer is Wide Open’s first major distributor in NSW and will be the lead point of contact for regional independent grocers wanting to stock the product.
Supplies of OatUP have been shipped to the company’s warehousing facilities in Homebush and Lilydale for distribution by month end.
Mr Albany said Wide Open would continue to collaborate with The Market Grocer on the promotion and distribution of OatUP to new regional consumers.
Strong local uptake
Since its launch earlier this year, OatUP has found favour with WA’s metropolitan grocery stores, providing “strong local uptake” for Wide Open and its Perth distribution partner European Foods.
New customers include independent grocery outlets such as Farmer Jacks, Boatshed Market, Brindle Group (The Good Grocer), Bunbury Farmers Market, Williams Woolshed and Spudshed.
Sales of OatUP into South Australia have been equally strong, with local distributor Ultimate Fine Foods reporting “positive initial uptake” from some of the state’s “shrewdest” grocery groups.
Wide Open is also focused on growing its OatUP market reach beyond Australia and into South East Asia, the US and Europe.