Sharpham Park, a Somerset company specialising in growing and milling organic spelt, has expanded into the US market after securing orders from a new supermarket partner in Texas.

The business has secured orders worth £17,000 for its spelt grain, spelt flour and breakfast cereals from Texan gourmet supermarket chain Central Market. The company secured the deal after attending a ‘Meet the Buyer’ event in Bristol organised as part of the Food is GREAT campaign.

The Food is GREAT campaign is a cross-departmental initiative between Defra and the Department for International Trade (DIT) to help more food and drink businesses export.

Central Market initially featured Sharpham Park’s products as part of a fortnight-long showcase of British food and drink and has since gone on to place this second order.

Global demand for spelt products is in part being driven by increased interest in healthy lifestyles and more people adopting a plant-based or vegan diet.

Exporting does not come without its challenges – and in the case of Sharpham Park’s entry into the US, the challenge was the strict labelling and regulatory requirements. DIT International Trade Advisers (ITAs), who have been working to support Sharpham Park with exporting for the past 12 years, were able to recommend a reliable partner.

Sharpham Park’s success in the US has helped it significantly grow it's export sales in the last 18 months and has provided a strong platform for growth by getting the products ready for a market with huge potential.

The business is now looking to further expand its reach in the US market, as well as in other markets overseas. It is currently in discussions with a potential new partner in China and has continued working with its ITAs to access advice from the China Britain Business Council on its Chinese market strategy.

Martin Brooks, sales and operations manager at Sharpham Park said: “These sales to Central Market have been a big win for the company, and we’re now setting our sights on further US growth.

“I’d recommend that anyone interested in exporting makes the most of the support and resources available. When we started out, we didn’t realise how much customer taste can vary from market to market – our bestselling products here in the UK are completely different to the biggest sellers in the US. Our British branding has also been a real draw for customers in the US and China.