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Building Beloved Brands No Matter the Category featuring Erika Cottrell, Harbor Wholesale

Running a national CPG brand and a distribution company seems like two different playing fields — but they might not be as different as you think.

Managing both types of companies requires strong leadership skills, authenticity and genuine concern for employees, and knowledge about the ins and outs of a business. What other skills are necessary to run two different types of companies? Erika Cottrell is here to tell you.

In this episode of the Gooder Podcast, host Diana Fryc is joined by Erika Cottrell, Vice President of Marketing for Harbor Wholesale, to discuss her path in the world of CPG and distribution. Erika shares how her experiences at Smucker’s helped her grow Harbor Wholesale, how she helped Smucker’s smoothly integrate two companies after an acquisition, and why she loves working at Harbor Wholesale.

In this episode we learn: 

  • Erika Cottrell explains Harbor Wholesale’s distribution services
  • How Erika ended up at Harbor Wholesale
  • Erika describes a recent acquisition she was a part of at Smuckers
  • Advice for integrating two different company cultures
  • Why authenticity is key to building trust
  • Erika’s proudest moments: mentoring fellow employees and watching them grow
  • What’s next for Harbor Wholesale?
  • Erika gives a shout-out to fellow powerhouse women leaders
  • Trends that Erika is watching: plant-based foods
Gooder Podcast

Building Beloved Brands No Matter the Category featuring Erika Cottrell, Harbor Wholesale

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About Erika Cottrell

Erika Cottrell is the Vice President of Marketing for Harbor Wholesale. Erika has extensive experience building beloved brands with inspired marketing and innovation that consumers, customers, and employees love. She is a consumer-centered leader leveraging entrepreneurial, mid-size, and Fortune 500 experience to lead the strategic planning, development, and execution of a company’s business objectives.

Previously, Erika was the General Manager of the Coffee Solutions Group for The Middleby Corporation and the Vice President of Marketing in the Consumer Foods Division for The J.M. Smucker Company.

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This episode is brought to you by Retail Voodoo

Retail Voodoo has been building beloved and dominant brands in the food, wellness, beverage, and fitness CPG industries for over 30 years. They’ve served multinational companies like PepsiCo. and Starbucks, startups like High Key, and everything in between. 

Their proven process guides hundreds of mission-driven consumer brands to attract a broad and passionate fan base, crush their categories through growth and innovation, and magnify their social and environmental impact. 

So, if you are ready to find a partner that will help your business create a high-impact strategy that gives your brand an advantage, Retail Voodoo is here to help.

Visit or email to learn more.

Diana Fryc

For Diana, a fierce determination to pursue what’s right is rooted in her DNA. The daughter of parents who endured unimaginable hardship before emigrating from Eastern Europe to the U.S., she is built for a higher purpose. Starting with an experience working with Jane Goodall to source sustainably made paper, she went on to a career helping Corporate America normalize the use of environmentally responsible products and materials before coming to Retail Voodoo.

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