A Call for Organic Entrepreneurs to enter the Den

Soil Association Scotland are searching for budding entrepreneurs within the organic food and drink sector to compete in their Dragon’s Den competition in the lead up to Organic September.

Organic Dragons Den requires entrants to deliver a five minute pitch on their product to a panel of specialists. Product entries must be food or drink related and can range from a well thought out idea to a fully-fledged prototype. Entrants to the Den will receive constructive feedback and advice from the panel in how to advance their product.

Three lucky winners will receive a New Product Development session with ‘Think Local’ plus ongoing invaluable help in bringing their product to market. An honorary award for ‘Best Tasting Product’ will also be given.

Entries should be submitted by Friday 24th July with the final judging taking place at Dynamic Earth on the 19th August. Five expert and influential judges will sit on the panel; Charlotte Maybury of QMU Gastronomy course, Susan Welsh of the Press & Journal, Paul Burrows of Greencity Wholefoods, Fiona Richmond of Scotland Food & Drink and Michelle Wilson of Triodos Bank.

Last year’s winner of “Best Tasting Product” for her air-dried, juniper-smoked mutton, Denise Walton of Peelham Farm, said of her experience in the den:

“Participating in the Organic Dragon’s Den and presenting it formally to a panel of expert judges made me really think about the product and how to present it which was invaluable in itself. Fielding their questions and receiving their immediate feedback helped me to focus on the marketing attributes of the product and to raise my game. It was an invaluable experience for which I am grateful.”

Alison Muirhead of Soil Association Scotland said: “The Den is a great way to see what local producers are doing and to support small businesses entering the organic sector. With 2015 being the Year of Food & Drink, Scotland’s bountiful larder has been in the spotlight making people aware of where their food comes from. With organic food offering great benefits to people, animals and the environment it’s important we take the opportunity to support business development in this sector and encourage conversation around organics.”

Organic Dragon’s Den comes in the run up to Soil Associations Organic September campaign. The campaign is UK-wide and runs for the whole of September. It aims to educate and encourage consumers to switch to organic by suggesting 30 small changes consumers could make to their shopping habits.

This event is part of Soil Association Scotland’s Growing Organic Routes project, supported by the Community Food Fund, which is financed by the Scottish Government.

For questions about Dragons Den contact Alison Muirhead amuirhead@soilassociation.org and to sign up visit http://www.soilassociation.org/news/newsstory/articleid/8094/organic-dragons-den