I am always more interested in Dragon’s Den when companies come on from the speciality food world. I think this series, so far, there have been three – and in any event there always seems to be at least one food and drink company on the programme. What is especially interesting, of course, is to find out the financials of these suppliers, or in some cases, ex-suppliers. These are the kind of questions it is not polite to ask during supplier meetings, and most suppliers are too small to have to post full audited accounts, so illuminating to see what is really going on.
Why is it that the same old lessons need to be learned time and time again? I received a phone call last week advising me that one of our suppliers had gone into administration. Launched at the peak of the popcorn revolution, Portlebay Popcorn, were different to many in that they made their own products. Very commendable and something we look for as a priority with our suppliers.