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The Seedlab Australia Village

How do you build community across the Country? How do you make friends when they are in another country – like New Zealand? And how do you do all this when you are a busy founder working away in your business, with barely time to raise your head above water?

Well: if you’re part of Seedlab Village (aka the Seedlab Family, so-named by Rhona Mackenzie, Red Shoots NZ), you come along to our regular Zoom Cuppa and Chat sessions. Recently, we have had two – one for all our Alumni, and one just for the new Bootcampers on the block.

Cuppa and Chat

Cuppa and Chat is where we eat our lunch together, and talk about anything from the weather, to kids, pets, business challenges and packaging options. We share nerves, questions, tips and tricks.

In our Alumni get together this week, I couldn’t help but notice what a diverse group of products we had represented: insects, buckwheat, toothbrushes, brittle, legumes, tonics, cleaning products, non-alcoholic drinks, fish products, dried fruit and veg products and more, more more! We have participants from Bootcamp 2 and 7, and Cultivators from Rounds 1, 2, 5 and 6.

It also seemed to be the event to share major achievements at. For example:

Rhona Mackenzie from Red Shoots NZ (Cultivate 1): Daily Good is at the Fine Foods show in London 11th and 12th of September. Keep everything crossed that they get some retailers on board in the UK!

Skye Blackburn from Circle Harvest (Cultivate 5): Cirlce Harvest (The Edible Bug Shop) will be in the Flavours of NSW stand at Fine Food. Skye is sooooo excited. It’s her favourite show of the year!

Will Baldock from Off-Piste Provisions NZ (Cultivate 6): Off-Piste are launching 4 plant-based jerky-style snacks in 20 WHSmith stores nationally this month.

Jeannene Anchen, Bark with Buster (Cultivate 6): Bark with Buster are exhibiting at The Royal Melbourne Show 11 days starting 21st Sep & The Vet Expo 18-19th Oct.

Frances, Awesome Source G&T’s (Bootcamp 2): Awesome Source have made it into the Top Non Alc Drinks in the Good Food Guide again!

Ned Heaton, The Turtle Tribe (Bootcamp 7): Ned is the 2022 Australian Teen Entrepreneur of the Year (Teens in Business Awards).

Greta, Bendigo Brittle (Bootcamp 7): Bendigo Brittle is the 2023 Australia Post Local Business Hero, and 2023 Small and Succeeding Bendigo Excellence Business Award (Be.Bendigo & Bendigo Bank)… WOO HOO!

Sheet Yeah! (Bootcamp 7): Sheet Yeah – Just went live this week on Amazon USA and they are a finalist in the she.com awards and find out on the 6th September where they have placed!

Our Bootcamp 7 Cuppa was all about questions and A-Ha moments from content we have covered so far in Seedlab.

A-Ha Moments

My Biggest Aha…….My misunderstanding on Gluten-Free. Because I am completely plant-based and there is no gluten in my factory ANYWHERE I didn’t think I had to lab test.

– Kelly | Woodlane Orchard

Changes to labelling requirements e.g. gluten free testing as well.

Roz | Elato

The biggest aha moment for me is the volume estimation for supplying retail!

Greta | Bendigo Brittle.

It sounds obvious now, but all the systems and procedures to scale. Seedlab is like having a map through a forest. I think we would have been lost without it. Sure, we could stumble around, but this is FANTASTIC! We’ve also asked our Chinese suppliers for backup contacts as well in case THEY fall under a bus!

Ned and Shane | The Turtle Tribe

Insurance, trademarks, understanding P&L… upgrading all and have booked time with my accountant to drill down further into my numbers and everyday operating costs! Woo Hoo!

Greta | Bendigo Brittle

PEAL labelling as I’m a plant based business I realised that the manufacturer cannot have any non-plant based products or I will have to lab test often.

Frederic | Le Gourmand Foods.

Diana from Eat To Live summed up the session so well:

“‘Cuppa and Chat’ sessions helped me feel comfortable and truly a part of the Seedlab family. I’ll never forget how my voice was literally shaking the first time I spoke on Zoom. I realised that we all face similar challenges. This community of like-minded individuals has made me realise that facing these challenges together makes the journey much easier. Thank you for creating a space where we can connect, learn, and grow together.”

Thanks Diana and all our family. We are here for you!

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