Ritual chooses Whole Foods for first brick and mortar launch based on ‘trust’

By Hank Schultz

- Last updated on GMT

Clear bottles are a brand differentiating feature of Ritual's packaging.  Photo courtesy of Ritual
Clear bottles are a brand differentiating feature of Ritual's packaging. Photo courtesy of Ritual

Related tags brick and mortar Direct to consumer Dietary supplement industry Dietary supplement companies multivitamins

Fast growing supplement brand Ritual has announced its first retail distribution deal with Whole Foods Markets, a partner chosen because “there is no retailer that has garnered more trust,” in the words of Ritual’s founder and CEO Katerina Schneider.

The new launch will see Whole Foods carry Ritual’s multivitamins for younger men and women as well as aimed at the 50 plus crowd.  The partnership also extends to the company’s pre and postnatal vitamins.

Packaging concerns

All of the products will be packaged in Ritual’s distinctive clear bottles.  There will be some packaging developments specific to the Whole Foods launch, however, Schneider said.

“We’ve become a leader in the industry known for our commitment to traceability . . . but as we enter retail this becomes different. To address this, we have designed new unit cartons that feature a lot of what you find on our website — striking imagery of our product technology, details on our leading third-party certifications, and our traceable ingredient sourcing. Plus, they are made from 100% post-consumer recycled paper,”​ Schneider told NutraIngredients-USA​.

Mission alignment

Schneider said the trust that Whole Foods has built up in the marketplace made it a good fit as Ritual’s initial brick and mortar partner.  The retailer’s market position and corporate practices closely align with those of Ritual, which is a certified B Corporation.

“It has always been my mission to build one of the most trusted brands for everyday health, playing into every decision we make since day one. From our approach to thoughtfully sourcing high-quality ingredients from around the world to completing a university-led, peer-reviewed clinical study and investing in leading third-party certifications such as Non-GMO Project Verification, Informed-Sport, and USP,  which is a leading third-party verification for product transparency that is held by less than 1% of supplement companies,”​ Schneider said.

Since its launch Ritual claims to have amassed more than a million customers.  The company also claims to have broken the $100 million mark in annual revenue.

Getting the inventory right

Supply chain issues have plagued the industry in recent years, leading to some unavoidable out of stocks even for some major, heretofore reliable brands.  Schneider said Ritual has planned ahead to make sure the Whole Foods launch can be adequately supported.

“We’re a technology company at our core so we rely heavily on data to predict the rough demand and the growth we’re expecting over time,” ​Schneider said.

“Given how important packaging is to our brand experience, we work tirelessly to forecast demand and lead times, but ultimately lean more on the side of sitting on extra packaging so we don’t run short. Our customers trust our products and rely on them during some of the most sensitive times of their life (our top selling online prenatal as an example), so we do our best to ensure they can continue to expect it to always arrive when they need it,”​ she added.

Schneider said Ritual has plans for additional brick and mortar distribution in the future.

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