Case Study: Ella's Kitchen
Transforming the organic baby food market
Ella's Kitchen has taken part in 3 Knowledge Transfer Partnerships (KTPs) at the University of Reading, helping bring in newskills and knowledge to the business.
The first KTP in 2010 involved academics at Henley Business School and the School of Psychology and Clinical Language Sciences. This project helped the company develop a multi-sensory marketing approach and improve children's enjoyment of healthy food.
For the second KTP, the focus was to transform the company's approach to sourcing raw materials. As well as helping maintain consistent high quality products, this also reduced costs.
With its third KTP, the company is aiming to improve food packaging to gain competitive advantage. Both the second and third KTPs involved the University's School of Food and Nutritional Sciences.
Ella's Kitchen now sells its organic baby and toddler food globally. This includes Norway, Sweden and the USA. Ella's Kitchen is the number 1 baby food brand in the UK - £1 in every £3 that's spent on wet baby food in the UK is spent on Ella's Kitchen. The company has a 20% share of the UK baby food sector with a global turnover of $100 million.
Paul Lindley explains the philosophy behind the company's success:
"Here at Ella's Kitchen, we try really hard to be good in sense - not just through the good food we make, but also by doing good stuff for our environment and giving stuff back to our local communities. We've done research with parents, little ones, psychologists and supermarkets to understand the very important role that all 5 of the senses play in developing healthy eating habits that last a lifetime."