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Food and Drink Accelerator

Do you have a new plant-based food or drink idea?

Have you spotted a gap in the market?

Would you like to turn your idea into a commercial reality?

Learn how to grow your business with our Food & Drink Accelerator programme. We offer free technical, business, and financial support to help take your concept to market.

What to expect

The programme runs over a four-month period. It includes training, workshops, and events. There will be lots of opportunity to network and meet other businesses operating in the sector.

- 4 in-person workshops in various locations across Kent – a full-day each month
- Online Business Innovation Masterclass – 1 hour per week
- One-to-one technical and business support available
- Networking and industry events

It is aligned to our Mentoring programme which also offers you 12 hours of free one-on-one support.

Apply for your place on the Accelerator. 

“If you’re looking for solutions or you just want to meet others who face similar problems, the help is there. You will find that it will energise you to help solve your own problems further”. Sam Duong, CEO of Ming Foods

About the Accelerator

The programme is run by experts in food product development, processing, handling, storage, and food waste.

We will work with you to;

  • Assess your idea
  • Identify any technical and business gaps
  • Define a clear direction to take your idea to market

You will receive technical support with access to cutting-edge facilities and equipment. Our research team can help you;

  • Develop your product
  • Produce a viable prototype
  • Develop a new process, practice or technology

It is based at the University of Greenwich in Medway, home to the new Medway Food Innovation Centre.

If you'd like to speak to our team about whether the Accelerator is right for your business, please use our contact form.

Who can apply?

We support horticultural and plant-based food and drink businesses from across the supply chain, including food products, technology and related services.

About you

  • Are you ambitious?
  • Looking to scale up your business fast?
  • Are you based in Kent or Medway, or looking to relocate to the region?
  • Can you commit to the four-month programme?

Applications are open to small and medium sized businesses who have not received more than £200,000 in public funds over the last 3 fiscal years.

Apply for the Accelerator. 

Why should I sign up?

  • Save time and money by connecting with experts who can help
  • De-risk by accessing research support to develop your product
  • Fast-track growth by raising finance and getting to market quickly.

Our events, training and workshops cover a broad range of areas, including technology, consumer insight, regulatory factors, financial support and marketing.

By joining the accelerator, you will receive intensive support and guidance to help make your business goals a reality.


Groups of between 10-20 businesses will be accepted in each round, which lasts for four months. Upcoming rounds will start from;

  • June 2023
  • October 2023
  • March 2024
  • September 2024

You can apply at any time.

Interested and ready to apply? Complete our application form and our Accelerator manager will be in touch. 

"Not only does the programme and team offer incredible practical help and encouragement but meeting other entrepreneurs on the programme offers further support and new friendships.” Aleta Viljoen, Pretty Pink Potato

News from our business support programme

Read more news and inspiration
Mentoring Matches: Taking it back to basics

Business support

JEM's Bar Co. and working with mentor Jo Pullen. They tell us about their experience so far and the importance of always thinking of your customers

21 businesses join food scale-up programme focussing on product innovation

Business support

Valerie Pondaven, our Food Accelerator manager, welcomed 21 new food and drink businesses to this round of our four month programme.

Scaling-up your food and drink business

Business support

The entrepreneurs on the Growing Kent & Medway Food Accelerator had the chance to ask industry experts for their advice on scaling-up their business

Launching a food and drink brand? How much does it really cost?

Business support

The importance of planning and accurate costing for your business to not only survive, but also thrive. Lessons from our recent webinar.