Frequently Asked Questions

For restaurant customers

General

We only work with food producers who are independently owned, produce, rear or grow their own products, or add-value to products from other independent producers or fisheries. We also look for producers who demonstrate a desire to produce quality products (often with external validation and certification). Read more about our quality criteria.

It is free for restaurants to use our platform and benefit from our services including the pricing diagnosis. We charge producers a 10% service on their net sales which covers all our services, such as listing their products, the efforts of our sales team, marketing and social media campaigns, logistical assistance, payment collection, order management, and bad debt insurance. The majority of producers absorb this fee into their wholesale price which means that you as a restaurant can access their products at their best wholesale price. So it’s as if you were driving directly to their farm and buying face to face, with no markups or hidden charges.

Working with a range of producers and restaurants we understand that a business’ needs and priorities change all of the time. With this in mind you are free to join and leave us based on the terms laid out in our Terms & Conditions which you will have to agree to upon joining the platform. In addition, and outside of our platform, you might want to have your own contract signed, and terms and conditions agreed, with the key producers you are trading with.

Yes! We do not take an additional margin or add a markup. All prices on the platform are set by the producers and it is usually the best wholesale price you can find. We are 100% transparent especially when compared to traditional wholesalers and distributors that typically add a 30 to 50% markup. This means that restaurants typically improve their margins by 10 to 20% when using our platform, in addition to all the time that they can save aggregating their orders and payments in one place.

No. The price that you see on the website or the price you receive from our quote system is the final price agreed between you and the food producer, and takes into account your specified delivery requirements and volume.

This is how the diagnosis works - you send us a list of your top ingredients with their prices and volumes and our expert procurement team will identify where we can supply products that are better quality at the same price, the same quality at a better price, or both. You will receive a full audit report for each key ingredient with several options, prices and information on the suppliers. All this is at no cost or obligation to you. We also provide frequent update reports to our existing customers to make sure they can always improve their sourcing, pricing and quality.

We are providing as much information we can to our food producers about each restaurant who joins the platform. This can include credit checks but also reputation checks, hygiene reports and customers feedback.

Building transparent and trustworthy relationships with people within the food industry is of paramount importance to us here at COLLECTIVfood.

Your order is either delivered directly by the producer or by one of our logistic partners, depending on the delivery service offered by the particular producer and your specific delivery requirements.

Order management

Payments are typically taken at the end of each calendar month. You will be provided with a statement summarising the orders placed for the month and we will automatically charge your credit or debit card or we will request for an immediate transfer to be made. Our payment provider then takes care of automatically splitting your one payment between the different suppliers you have purchased from. If you have agreed different payment terms with specific suppliers, through the quote functionality (e.g. upfront or weekly payments), the same process will happen but following the agreed schedule.

You can use the quote functionality on your COLLECTIVfood dashboard to send a specific request to a food producer. This is used for high volumes, complex delivery requirements and long-term relationships through recurring orders. The food producer will look at your request and come back to you with the best wholesale price possible taking into account the volume you need, the frequency and your delivery requirements.

All of our food producers sign up to our quality criteria. Quality and provenance are very important to us and we only work with food producers who are independently owned, produce, rear or grow their own products, or add-value to products from other independent producers or fisheries. We also look for producers who demonstrate a desire to produce quality products (often with external validation and certification).

We will make every effort to make sure that you get your ordered supplies. In the event of any issues please contact our customer service team and we will take all the necessary actions including having replacement products couriered to your restaurant.

We are in the process of creating a direct messaging function between producers and customers. For now you can only interact with the producer when accepting/declining orders, confirming receipt of the goods (quantities) and sending specific quote requests. And of course we will share your supplier’s contact details as and when they are needed, for example when organising deliveries.

You can cancel your order from the time of placing your order up until the cut off point specified by each producer. You are liable for the full cost of the order if you cancel an order after this time.

Technical

No. It will take less than 3 minutes to set up your account. Once we have activated your account you can start browsing and buying.

Please email us at and we will help you sort out the issue. Thank you!

If you still have any unanswered questions please contact us.

For food producers

General

We only work with food producers who are independently owned, produce, rear or grow their own products, or add-value to products from other independent producers or fisheries. We also look for producers who demonstrate a desire to produce quality products (often with external validation and certification). Read more about our quality criteria.

We charge a 10% service fee on net sales made through the platform. This fee covers all of our services including the listing of your products, the efforts of our sales team promoting your products, marketing and social media campaigns, logistical assistance, payment collection, overall order management, and soon to come, bad debt insurance. The majority of our food producers absorb this service fee into their wholesale price so that they can offer the most competitive price possible and as a result gain more customers. This means that restaurants can access your products at the same price as if they were coming directly to your farm, with no markups or hidden costs.

It is free to list your products on our website and so signing up comes with zero risk to yourself. You will automatically benefit from all of our services such as logistical support and insurance, and our sales and marketing team will promote your product. We only charge a 10% service charge on net sales when sales are actually made through the platform. No sales, no fees.

Working with a range of producers and buyers we understand that a business’ needs and priorities change all of the time. With this in mind you are free to join and leave us based on the terms laid out in our Terms & Conditions, which you will have to agree to upon joining the platform. In addition, and outside of our platform, you might want to have your own contract signed, and terms and conditions agreed, with the key restaurants you are trading with.

We have a sales and marketing team fully focused on promoting your products with our foodservice customers in London. We are also continuously adding new restaurants and foodservice companies onto the platform and so bringing you more customers.

We are proud of the amazing producers that we work with and put a lot of focus on sharing your products and stories across all of our marketing channels including social media, trade fairs, events, campaigns and mailing lists.

Trading with existing customers through our platform will make your business workflow more streamlined and efficient, saving you time and money. There are also other benefits such as logistical support and insurance (to come). And, most importantly, you will be promoted to a wider market, gaining new customers on top of your current ones.

We will provide you with background information on each restaurant so you can decide who you want to work with. At the moment you can see their credit checks, and in the near future we will be adding reputation checks, hygiene reports and customers feedback. We also have bad debt risk insurance in the pipeline so that you can trade on the COLLECTIVfood platform with complete peace of mind.

Pricing

You and only you set your prices; we do not apply any hidden markups or fee. We recommend that you list your products at your standard wholesale price which typically includes the cost of a single delivery. You can also set your minimum order quantity on your product page and you are always free to accept or decline any new orders.

Through our quote functionality you will be able to set different prices for a specific restaurant depending on the volume they have ordered or their delivery requirements. This price will stay confidential between you and the restaurant.

Yes you can set a range of prices for the same product according to the quantities. So for example 10kg of carrots might cost 50p/kg whilst 20kg of carrots cost 35p/kg.

Order management

You are in no way obliged to commit to every order request that you receive. For each order that you receive, you have to accept or decline it before any further steps can be taken.

You are free to decline orders based on availability, seasonality, or the minimum order requirement not being met and will be prompted to give a reason to the customer. To avoid this from happening we encourage you to keep your profile and product details as updated as possible. There is a feature on the platform to "set as available/set as unavailable" your products. So you can do it whenever you run out of stock. This would not impact existing approved orders.

Accepting an order means that you are agreeing to deliver the products requested in their full, undamaged state during the agreed delivery time. If you do accept an order but at the last minute are unable to fulfil it for any reason, then we would find a replacement for the restaurant and charge you for the cost of the product and the courier delivery charge.

We are in the process of creating a direct messaging function between producers and customers. For now you can only interact with the customer when accepting or declining orders and confirming receipt of the goods (quantities). We are also able to share some more details through the quote functionality. And of course we will share your customer’s contact details as and when they are needed, for example when organising deliveries.

Delivery

Yes, we encourage you to upload as much information as possible, so if you need to know your orders a certain number of days in advance you should include this information on your product page.

You deliver the product straight to the restaurant. If this is not possible then we may be able to provide you with a quote from our refrigerated logistics partner depending on the order and delivery requirements.

The majority of our producers organise the delivery of their products, but we are happy to help when this is not possible for an extra cost. We have a range of delivery solutions including:

  • For large volumes, we can collect and deliver to multiple locations in London on the same day (refrigerated and frozen).
  • If you can drop pallets or goods to our hub located in Northampton we can make multiple drops to London the same morning.
  • If your courier can deliver your products to one of the following train stations: Sheffield, Derby, Nottingham, Leicester, Plymouth, Penzance, London St. Pancras or London Paddington, then we can deliver them by train to the customer in London.

Payment

All of the orders that you accept between 00:01 on the first day of the month until midnight on the last of the month, will be collated into a monthly statement on the first day of the following month. After this, all the customers will be charged and you will be paid for all of your sales within 2-5 working days.

If you agree to different payment terms with one of your customers, you will get paid either upfront or on a weekly or monthly basis.

No, in the same way we don’t hold or handle any products, we don’t handle any money, as the contractual agreement is between you and the buyer. Once the monthly statements have been sent, money goes from the customer’s account through our payment provider, Stripe, who then automatically sends the money into your account.

We only produce monthly statements, but if requested by the buyer, each producer is still responsible for raising VAT invoices. There is a function on the platform for you to upload the corresponding VAT invoices for the monthly statements for each customer.

Technical

Please email us at and we will help you sort out the issue. Thank you!

If you still have any unanswered questions please contact us.