Ten years ago, the Specialty Food Association (SFA), New York, began working with food incubators. Then, several of those incubators and their emerging companies evolved into Incubator Alley. Today, these incubators take on an expanded footprint and become Incubator Village.
"Specialty foods are now a $140 billion industry," says Phil Kafarakis, president. "Small emerging brands — innovative and totally focused on what consumers want — are leading trends, but it can be difficult to succeed in the food industry. Food incubators give new and passionate entrepreneurs a solid chance to enter the marketplace by providing them with opportunities to test concepts and create successful product launches. SFA is thrilled to showcase these incubators, and give show attendees a deeper understanding of how they help grow our industry."
The new Incubator Village features 11 U.S. incubators, showcasing 80 companies SFA has helped launch or grow.
The lineup of incubators includes:
- Chobani Incubator Program, New York
- Commonwealth Kitchen, Boston
- Cornell University, Ithaca, N.Y.
- The Hatchery, Chicago
- Hope & Main, Providence, R.I.
- HBK Incubates/Hot Bread Kitchen, New York
- La Cocina, San Francisco
- Louisiana State University, Baton Rouge, La.
- Oregon State University Food Innovation Center, Portland, Ore.
- Rutgers Food Innovation Center, New Brunswick, N.J.
- South Fork Kitchens by Amagansett Food Institute, Long Island, N.Y.