After visiting acquaintances in Memphis Tennessee in October 2017, I came across a BBQ sauce that had a distinctive flavor. At first, I wanted to import this BBQ sauce, but the venture failed due to the supplier’s volume requirements and I didn’t have any sales channels for the product yet. Back in Switzerland, I made the decision in 2018 to produce my own BBQ sauce with Swiss raw materials. The idea Helvetic Barbeque was born and I spent a year studying recipes, legal requirements and branding.
During this year I became aware of the difficulty of my undertaking, on the one hand because of the availability of raw materials and on the other hand because the project has a limited focus on Switzerland as a target group. To this I must say that Switzerland is actually not a “united people”, because each canton has different “preferences” and mentalities, one speaks four languages, the mountain man would not like to be a city man and of course vice versa. This results accordingly in several target groups to which my sauce should appeal.
Soon, of course, I asked myself how I could implement the project in an appealing way.
In May 2019, the time had come, I started the proof of concept with Helvetic Barbeque Original Sauce. With that, I also set myself four goals, which doomed the project to continue or fail. The beginning was resinous, but promising! I visited butcher shops all over Switzerland and presented my product. Fortunately, some butchers were enthusiastic about my sauce, which is why Helvetic Barbeque won its first distribution partners within a very short time. I received an additional boost of motivation from one of the first orders placed via our online store. The team boss of the renowned Chläggi Brutzler BBQ Team ordered a Helvetic Barbeque Original Sauce – at that time I didn’t know that his team was multiple Swiss champion and vice world champion in BBQ. He was thrilled with my sauce, which is why I gained an established advertiser in the BBQ scene shortly thereafter. In the first few weeks, Helvetic Barbeque also received an inquiry from a Swiss wholesaler who wanted to distribute my sauce.
Due to the positive response, Helvetic Barbeque Zwätschgä Sauce was launched during the PoC, which sets accents with its fruity touch in addition to the classic Original Sauce. Excitingly, the Zwätschgä sauce is in great demand in French-speaking Switzerland and during the winter season.
In conclusion, I can say that all the objectives of the PoC were achieved and I received the certainty that Helvetic Barbeque has potential in the Swiss market…
.. Thanks to you!