Walmart still looking for Arizona entrepreneurs’ products

Business News | 26 Apr |

If you’ve ever dreamed of potentially reaching thousands of customers with your American products, now is the time to act: Walmart is accepting applications for its 6th annual Open Call, scheduled for June 18 and 19 at the company’s Home Office campus in Bentonville, Arkansas. Apply today by visiting Walmart-jump.com for the opportunity to secure a face-to-face pitch meeting with a Walmart buyer. The application deadline is April 30.

“WILD TONIC is excited to collaborate with Walmart on Open Call, a remarkable initiative that showcases outstanding American products,” said Queen Bee (aka founder), Holly Lyman.  She continued “WILD TONIC started in 2015 as a small local craft brewery in a 3,000 square foot space making traditional Jun Kombucha and later introduced a line of Hard Jun Kombucha. Four years later, in 2019, WILD TONIC has expanded into a 36,000 square foot space and has national distribution as one of the country’s fastest-growing breweries. We are thrilled to be one of the largest employers in our small town of Cottonwood, AZ and growing every day with 56 employees! We also have a sister business that nurtures local talent to farm and grow a lot of the ingredients we use in our brews, making it truly a farm to bottle brew! We love that Walmart is putting an emphasis on showcasing products from businesses that have a long-term vision of health and sustainability for our environment and the economy! Walmart has helped us to grow our business beyond our WILDest dreams!”  

This year’s Open Call attendees could secure deals ranging from a handful of stores in local markets, to supplying hundreds, even thousands of stores, Sam’s Clubs and Walmart.com. The two-day event informs, empowers and encourages attendees while providing effective networking opportunities for local entrepreneurs.

“Our customers tell us that products made, sourced or grown in the U.S. are important to them and we work year-round to identify local suppliers and source products that our customers are proud to buy,” said Cindi Marsiglio, Walmart’s vice president of Merchandise Services and U.S. Manufacturing. “Walmart’s Annual Open Call gives us a unique opportunity to meet entrepreneurs from across the country and discover new, niche and innovative products that fill a need for our customers and support jobs right here in America.”

During the 2018 Walmart Open Call, nearly 600 meetings were held with product pitches including toys, apparel, natural health and beauty aids, and food. Prospective suppliers traveled from 46 states, the District of Columbia and Puerto Rico. More than half of the attending businesses self-identified as diverse, including nearly 25 percent identifying as women-owned.

Following last year’s event, a new line-up of products has begun arriving on Walmart shelves and Walmart.com, representing the dreams of dozens of entrepreneurs across the country, including:  

Ahssa Foods LLC, Mesa, Arizona – Low-fat gourmet sauces

Bodylove Naturals, Rogers, Arkansas – Natural skincare products

The Cumberland Companies, Knoxville, Tennessee – Fog-free shaving mirror

Mame’s Burrito Company, Denver, Colorado – Organic breakfast burritos

The Perfect Granola, Rochester, New York – Naturally sweetened granola bars

RPM, Savage, Minnesota – Placemats for pet food bowls

Shoe Crazy, Chesterfield, Virginia – Unique wine blends

Wings Cosmetics LLC, Andrews, Texas – Winged eyeliner stamp

In January 2013, Walmart announced its commitment to help boost job creation and U.S. manufacturing through buying an additional $250 billion in products supporting American jobs by 2023. Walmart’s Open Call is one way in which the company continues to invest in this commitment. Last year, Walmart spent $1.6 billion with Arizona suppliers, supporting 32,767 local jobs.

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