USA – Specialty & fresh products distributor to chains and independent groceries, KeHE has inked a national secondary distribution agreement with National Co+op Grocers (NCG) on behalf of its 147-member retail food co-ops.

NCG founded in 1999, is a business services cooperative for retail food co-ops located throughout the United States.

This first-of-its-kind supplementary supply agreement fortifies NCG’s supply chain capability and provides its members with a needed alternate source for natural, organic, specialty and fresh products, indicated KeHE.

“Our partnership with KeHE will support new growth opportunities for our members and secure an alternative source of supply to support high in-stock levels,” stated C.E. Pugh, NCG CEO.

“KeHE has demonstrated the ability to enable independent natural retailers of all sizes to thrive and grow, and our members are excited to have access to KeHE’s support and portfolio of unique, innovative and regional items,” he added.

NCG’s member co-ops operate more than 200 storefronts in 38 states with combined annual sales of nearly US$2.1 billion.

“Since its founding 21 years ago, NCG has been a pioneer in the natural food industry and a leader in natural food retailing. Our companies are both B Corps and share many of the same values, including a commitment to serve customers and feed communities across the nation.

“We are honored NCG has chosen KeHE to help them build on their success,” said Brandon Barnholt, CEO of Naperville, IL-based KeHE Distributors.

KeHE Distributors is the largest, pure play distributor of natural & organic, specialty, and fresh products to natural food stores, chain and independent grocery stores, ecommerce retailers and other specialty product retailers throughout North America.

“Our partnership with KeHE will support new growth opportunities for our members and secure an alternative source of supply to support high in-stock levels.”

C.E. Pugh – NCG CEO.

Over the past couple of years, KeHE has steadily expanded its client roster. In February, the company landed a four-year primary distribution pact with Northwest Grocers (NWG), which provides advertising, marketing, merchandising and other services to independent grocery retailers in the Pacific Northwest.

Last October, KeHE expanded its partnership with The Save Mart Cos., becoming its primary distributor for perimeter categories and renewing its natural, organic and specialty product distribution pact with the grocer.

And in September 2019, KeHE entered into a primary wholesale deal with better-for-you grocery chain MOM’s Organic Market.

In June 2019, KeHE was named as the primary U.S. wholesaler of the Independent Natural Food Retailers Association (INFRA) cooperative, and that February Albertsons Cos. renewed its supply agreement with KeHE as its primary wholesaler for natural, organic and specialty products.

The previous year, KeHe added online natural/organic grocer Thrive Market as a primary distribution customer and renewed its distribution pact with Sprouts Farmers Market through 2025.

KeHE also entered into a multi-year partnership agreement with Spoiler Alert in April this year, aimed at reducing food waste in its supply chain.

Food waste reduction is one of the key solutions to impact climate change, and KeHE says that it is committed to moving the needle towards a sustainable future through its collaborations with organizations like Spoiler Alert and Climate Collaborative.

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