With hundreds of leading lifestyle brands, CLF Distribution offers UK retailers a comprehensive choice  

For over 25 years, CLF Distribution (CLF) has been a one-stop shop for climate-conscious consumers in the health and wellbeing market. The company’s history is indistinguishable from that of its founder and his family. Managing Director, Logan Holiday, explains: “CLF was founded in 1998 by my father, Robin Holiday. When we lived in America, Robin used to race motorbikes, and had a sponsorship deal with AST Sports Science. On moving back to the UK, he started AST Sports Science UK Limited to become the UK importer and distributor for the brand. Two years later, the business began distributing for other sports nutrition brands and the company name was changed to CLF Distribution Ltd (C, L and F are the initials of mine and my siblings’ names).  

“The company has grown since then, moving from our family garage in New Milton, Hampshire, to several other locations to accommodate our expansion. Demand

Logan Holiday
Logan Holiday, Managing Director

from our customer base has also changed, meaning the product mix has evolved. Our focus on pure sports nutrition products has extended to include other healthy lifestyle goods such as organic foods, vitamin and mineral supplements, personal care, household management, and pet care.”  

New and innovative products

Logan elaborates on the business’ growth. “In 2012, we moved to our current 38,000 square-foot warehouse in Southampton. In 2013, we became a brand-owner and since have developed numerous brands that are sold into our customer base of independent high street retailers – the brands are all exclusive to those customers and are not sold in multiples or heavily discounted online, which means our retailers do not have to compete directly with the supermarkets to make their customers ‘sticky’. If they like one of our brands, they must go back to the retailer each time to buy it.  

“My siblings and I have grown up with CLF, and over the years have spent lots of time contributing to the business. In early 2018, I joined CLF full time. My first project was to develop and manufacture a range of made-to-order vegan lunch items aiming to drive daily footfall into our retailers. In July 2018, my sister Fallon also joined the company. She started out in a temporary role as part of our customer services team and is now managing the entire department. 

“In early 2022, Robin sold his shares in CLF to the employees in the form of an Employee-Owned Trust (EOT). The formation of the EOT means all employees have a voice in the running of the company, and we have made many great improvements in the last two years off the back of this. The EOT also introduced a monthly profit share for each member of staff. This means every employee can make an impact on the success of CLF.” 

CLF StaffThis community-driven company culture provides a strong foundation for CLF as it continues to diversify its product and service offering. Logan explains: “Our core business is supplying independent high street retailers across the UK with our catalog of over 16,000 product lines. We can serve customers with next day ‘just in time’ deliveries up to seven days a week. We supply products as ‘shelf ready’, which means most of our portfolio can be ordered in singles or small multiples, rather than full cases. Our fleet of vehicles allows us to serve most customers directly, and our reusable tote packaging ensures that we produce minimal waste.  

“The exclusive brands I mentioned previously have also become reliable footfall drivers for many of our retailers. Just Natural is our biggest brand, consisting of a range of organic dried goods such as cereals, grains, pulses, beans, dried fruit, nuts, seeds, herbs, and spices. We always develop our brands to give retailers a point of difference, be it organic, natural ingredients, plastic free, or low mileage. In the case of Just Natural, much of the range is organic, certified by the Vegan Society and it is also packed in 100 percent plastic-free, home-compostable packaging. Other CLF brands, which now sit under the umbrella of Just Natural Health & Beauty Brands, include Organic Kitchen, Prima Italia, Balanced, Kurin Oral Care, and many more. 

 “We also provide a service to our brands that we wholesale. We have a good mix of well-known mainstream brands like Oatly and Clipper Teas, but a big chunk of our catalog comprises small startups. For many of these smaller brands, we provide their first route to market. Following a listing with us, their products are then open to be ordered by over 1200 CLF customers. We and our retailers rely on a constant flow of new and innovative products to keep our offering interesting and to give customers a point of difference from the supermarkets. 

“Looking to the future, I think we will be doing the same as we do today, just on a bigger scale. We have seen good levels of growth over the last couple of years and I think this is because of the service we give our customers. I expect that trend to continue. I would also like to see our in-house brands grow and establish a strong following of loyal customers,” Logan concludes.