Selling Online
March 1, 2023

How to Start Dropshipping Food in 2023 - Complete Guide

So, you want to start a dropshipping food business? We get it, everyone is turning to the Internet to buy online, and you want a piece of the action! In this guide, we’re going to walk you through the important notes to dropship food. Check them out now!

Hien Tran
Table of Contents:

Do you know that you can dropship food?

Nowadays, dropshipping is not just limited to phone cases and novelty mugs. 

There is an industry that many entrepreneurs have yet to discover, but is massively growing in both customer demand and supplier availability. From coffee, to tea, to olive oil, there's a huge opportunity to become a major player in the food dropshipping world. 

Everyone loves great-tasting food, and we all have to eat it daily. Therefore, regardless of shifting trends in business, when it comes to dropshipping food, you should always have an audience. 

However, there are also a few challenges that need your attention. That’s why we’ve crafted this in-depth food dropshipping guide. Below is everything you need to know, including ideas, suppliers, and valuable tips. 

Let’s explore!

Pros & cons of dropshipping food

Before jumping into dropshipping food, you should have an overview of this industry. At least you should know its pros and cons clearly.


  • Low return rate. We’re not trying to say that you should become a food dropshipper just because of the low return rate. The point here is food items don’t have to fit perfectly in comparison with other items, such as clothing or shoes. So, customers do not often return food items bought online. 

  • High possibility of repeat purchases. If customers like your food items, they’ll surely come back to buy more. And dropshipping food is a great way to encourage repeat purchases (we eat food every day, don’t we?). To achieve that, you need to work with high-quality suppliers, deliver exceptional customer support, and build customer loyalty. 

  • No need to worry about spoilage and shelf-life. That doesn’t mean you can sell food items past their expiration dates. But this means you don’t have to worry about spoilage and shelf-life because your supplier is responsible for that. So, it’s of utmost importance to find and work with high-quality dropshipping food suppliers. 


  • Food availability. You can buy most food items in a regular supermarket. Besides, some stores now deliver wares when you order them online. And so do restaurants. That’s why neither of them needs a dropshipping business as a mediator. 

You may think: If I cannot go local, how about international trade? Many people are interested in exotic food items from different countries. Yes, however, most people are afraid to order products from unknown manufacturers. Plus, even canned food can spoil quickly if your suppliers don’t store it properly.  

  • Legal requirements. To start dropshipping food, you must understand the laws pertaining to the food industry. That may be one of the most challenging things. However, you should read on to learn how to overcome this challenge.

  • Hard to gain customer trust. It’s hard to tell the quality of a product online, especially when it comes to food. And online shoppers know that. Therefore, it might be hard to establish a trusted brand name. However, as we said above, you can gain customer trust by offering quality food items, delivering stellar customer support, and being honest, transparent, and reachable. 

Even though dropshipping food is potential, it’s still very risky and complicated. So, you should think carefully before trying it. 

5 ideas to start your dropshipping food business 

Food is a huge industry. However, not all types of food items sell well online. 

Therefore, instead of offering “food for everyone,” consider getting more specific with your dropshipping niche. Try our recommendations below for the best food items. 

1. Organic, healthy foods & beverages

This niche has skyrocketed because health-conscious consumers opt for organic, healthy foods and beverages to feed and nourish themselves and their loved ones. 

Organic, healthy foods & beverages

According to the Organic Trade Association (OTA), around 83% of Americans buy organic foods at least some of the time. Six years ago, only 30% of Americans did.

The most common reason why Americans choose organic over standard includes health concerns and fear of harmful chemicals in foods. And buying certified organic foods & beverages is one way that health-conscious consumers move closer to their healthy eating goals.

From organic teas and botanicals, herbs & spices to nutrient-dense foods and protein bars, you can add various products to your dropshipping store. In fact, you can partner with many dropshipping suppliers within this niche. 

You just need to decide on your product idea, start a dropshipping food business, and then market your products so that consumers can buy a variety of healthy products without ever leaving their homes. 

2. Vegan food items

Vegan food items

According to Plant Based News, this niche contributed nearly $29.5 billion to the global economy in 2020. And its sales could surpass $77 billion by 2025, hitting $160 billion by 2030.

That’s a good indicator that more and more consumers are buying plant-based food items, and this trend is not going to fade out anytime soon.

But which types of food to sell within this niche?

You can consider many food products, such as soy & nut-based dairy alternatives, vegan snacks, and health supplements. 

3. Pet food & related items

The pet industry is constantly expanding. The pet care market was valued at more than $232 billion in 2020. And it is estimated to reach $350 billion by 2027 with a 6.1% compounded annual growth rate. 

Pet food & related items

The best thing about this niche is the customers’ engagement. As your potential buyers want the best for their beloved furry friends, they don’t mind spending a little extra. For that to happen, they’ll consider your offers worthy of their attention, of course. 

This niche covers a huge array of products, including food, clothing, toys, grooming, and training. You’ll have a lot of choices for your dropshipping store.

4. Kitchenware 


We know that kitchenware doesn’t belong to the dropshipping food niche. However, this is a product category you may want to consider when selling food online. 

Many people around the world love cooking and preparing tasty meals. And they’re willing to spend money on kitchenware online.

Therefore, here are several irresistible kitchenware product recommendations: coffee & tea cups, wooden plates, cute & funny kids’ plates, etc.

5. Other food-related items

Ideas for dropshipping food need to be innovative sometimes. Thus, you may want to add some interesting and funny food-related items to your catalog. 

For example, cloth napkins can be great sellers for your dropshipping business. Food-themed clothing (i.e., T-shirts and socks) is also a great way to be creative with food-related product ideas. 

Top 6 dropshipping suppliers for food items

To build a trusted food brand name, you need to offer high-quality product items. And that’s where a reliable & trustworthy supplier comes into play!

Below are the best 6 dropshipping suppliers for your food items. Check them out and find the most appropriate one for your store.  

1. Dripshipper

When it comes to dropshipping organic coffee, Dripshipper is one of the best suppliers you can find in the market. 

Even though organic coffee only accounts for around 3% of the US total volume of coffee beans, it makes up a whopping THIRD of all organic beverage sales. And this figure is expected to grow more and more in the near future. Customers are also more health-conscious, making organic coffee an excellent way for you to start a national brand. 

Dripshipper should be your first choice when it comes to dropshipping organic coffee

So, why should you choose Dripshipper as your supplier?

  • High-quality organic coffee. Their range of certified organic coffees is fully compliant with the US Department of Agriculture’s standards. That means every bag of organic coffee your consumers buy is 100% free from artificial substances (i.e., pesticides and herbicides).

  • Certified organic coffee roasters. All their facilities are certified and compliant with strict regulations, including FDA regulations. The range consists of Fair Trade, SHB, SHG, and more. 

  • Freshest organic coffee. With the strict “roast the ship” policy, Dripshipper makes sure that your customers deserve the freshest organic beans and blends. Then, after the roasting, they let the beans rest before locking in the flavors just in time for pickup. Your customers will enjoy organic coffee with a difference!

  • Available private label program. Why not add your own logo to the coffee bags? All you need is to upload your own brand logo, and Dripshipper transforms everything from packaging to products to make all organic coffee look like it came from you. Learn more here

  • Quick and easy ordering. With the Dripshipper app, you can order the best organic coffee with little to no effort. Simply sign up, and finish your first order in a few minutes. No emails, calls, or queues! After your order is placed, Dripshipper roasts, rests, and bags your beans, before shipping them through UPS or USPS in 3-5 days. 

In addition, Dripshipper offers more than 40 affordable and rich coffee blend options to help you compliment every customer’s taste. Remember that you can also use their demo store to obtain samples. 


2. Bangalla

If you want to expand your product options, Bangalla is another great supplier. As one of the largest dropshipping food suppliers in North America, Bangalla offers a number of organic and natural products. 


The company carries more than 700 brands and 125 product categories, from vegan and gluten-free products to healthy snacks. 

Bangalla doesn’t charge dropshipping and handling fees. They also don’t ask you to order a minimum amount of food products. However, they offer three pricing plans, including:

  • Silver Plan: Free
  • Gold Plan: $195/year (or $25/month)
  • Platinum Plan: $795/year (or $89/month)

You should check them out to see if one is suitable for you.

3. Deja Vegan 

Deja Vegan is your niche spot for premium vegan snacks. With 100+ nutritious, healthy, and mouth-watering snacks, Deja Vegan ensures to deliver the best products for vegans and those who desire healthier lifestyles. 

Deja Vegan

Their dropshipping program is quite simple:

  • Step 1: Customer places an order on your website
  • Step 2: You send Deja Vegan an email with the quantity, products, and customer’s shipping address
  • Step 3: Deja Vegan charges your credit card (via PayPal)
  • Step 4: Deja Vegan ships the products out to the customers and sends you the tracking number so that you can pass it along to the customer. 

Besides, Deja Vegan is a PETA Business Partner. Thus, it comes as no surprise that the company donates a significant portion of its profits to help improve the lives of animals throughout the world.  


4. PetDropshipper

Trusted by thousands of online sellers, PetDropshipper is a veteran dropshipping supplier of wholesale pet supplies. 


As a matter of fact, PetDropshipper offers over 14,000 products from more than 200 nationally known brands. They also provide many unique features, including automation solutions for online merchants. 

To list products on your website, you can order their data file for a one-time fee. That’ll give you access to all of their product details in a spreadsheet format, including the newest items, product updates, price changes, discontinued items, and many more. 

5. Brybelly

Since its inception in 2014, Brybelly has been one of the largest US dropshipping suppliers. The company offers a large inventory, including kitchenware, games, toys, party supplies, pet supplies, etc. 


Brybelly’s dropshipping process is also simple, involving 5 steps:

  • Step 1: You list Brybelly’s products on your website with their images and descriptions
  • Step 2: Sell their products on your website at the price that you’ve set
  • Step 3: Place an order at Brybelly and pay their discounted wholesale price
  • Step 4: Brybelly ships directly to your customers with your custom-designed packing list
  • Step 5: You keep the profit between your sale proceeds and their discounted prices

You should speak with one of their representatives about dropshipping fees to know more. 

6. Printful

If you’re interested in our food-themed clothing idea above, you should try a POD (Print on Demand) supplier like Printful. This is one of the most popular POD companies in the current landscape. 


Printful benefits from fast shipping times, so you can strengthen your relationships with customers by offering items as fast as possible. What’s more, Printful has a built-in mockup generator, meaning you can check how your T-shirts or socks are going to look in advance. 

With Printful, you’ll pay for the items that you want to buy and sell with unique designs. You’ll also pay for things like packaging and fulfilling the order. Actually, it’s hard to predict a price with POD companies, as it heavily depends on what you purchase, and what kind of service you want to give your customers. 

6 important steps to start a dropshipping food business

So, how do you go about dropshipping food products? What are the necessary steps that you should take to make it a profitable move?

Well, let’s break it down as follows!

Step 1: Understand the laws

Different countries and regions come with different food laws and licensing requirements. Meanwhile, particular food sectors might be subject to additional rules. For example, you might need to obtain a reseller’s permit. 

Therefore, it’s recommended that you consult a lawyer, as well as visit the official website of your government to find information specific to your dropshipping business. 

Understand the laws before dropshipping food

Please keep in mind that you have to view food safety as a top priority when entering this industry. However, as you’re a dropshipping store owner (you don’t manufacture the food you sell online), it’s your supplier’s responsibility to take care of it.

So, you must look for and partner with reliable suppliers to ensure that you sell safe and quality food items. 

Step 2: Pick a niche for your business

As we said in the previous section, food is an extremely broad industry. So, the more specific you get, the more likely you’re to stand out. 

Pick a niche for your food business

Start by thinking about which food types you are passionate about. If you don’t have a particular preference, some initial market research could inspire you. Use keyword search tools (Google Keyword Planner, Semrush, etc.) to see what people are currently searching for in the food industry. 

Alternatively, you can look into our 5 ideas above for inspiration. 

Step 3: Find a quality dropshipping supplier

Choosing the right supplier is essential in the dropshipping food landscape. The wrong selection puts your business at risk, while it could lead to food poisoning and illness in customers. 

Find a quality food dropshipping supplier 

When looking for dropshipping suppliers, take the time to examine the reviews left by previous merchants. Pay attention to transparency in your suppliers in the form of well-defined processes and plenty of information about where products come from.

If you are seeking a supplier with specific credentials (such as sustainably sourced ingredients), but you cannot find evidence of those facts online, reach out and ask for more information. Any reliable supplier should be able to provide the information required to put your mind at ease. 

Make sure that your suppliers can also provide products with a decent shelf-life, so you’re not selling foods nearing an expiration date. Plus, it’s recommended to choose suppliers with an extensive inventory of products as well as the ability to quickly, safely, and efficiently ship these items. 

Besides, you should place a sample order from your supplier. That allows you to check the product quality to really ensure that your customers will have a great experience. Plus, you’ll be able to check your suppliers’ support, delivery process, etc. 

Step 4: Build your online food store

Now, you are almost ready to start your dropshipping food business. 

However, you need a website to promote your food items. While you may attract customers from blogs, social media, and online video platforms, your website will be at the heart of your business. 

Start with a well-known website builder like Shopify or Wix, and design something that appeals to your audience.

Build your online food store

It’s essential to make your food look as irresistible as possible. Actually, when it comes to selling food, it would be wise to do your best to make potential customers salivate! That’s why high-quality product images are crucial. Moreover, ensure to write epic product descriptions to encourage people to buy. Your images and written content need to compel website visitors to take action. 

On your website, focus on your:

  • About page - to help customers know who you are
  • Contact page - for any customer questions
  • FAQ page - with information about your suppliers
  • Blog page - for content marketing
  • Any accreditation or certificates - to prove the safety and quality of your food items
  • A lead generation strategy - such as landing pages or pop-ups to encourage visitors to join your email list.

Note: Create your brand guidelines before building your online store. It’s critical to use the same tone of voice, colors, and imagery in all digital channels. Consistent branding ensures your food business is easily recognizable across all customer touchpoints. 

Step 5: Set the ideal prices for your products

Pricing can be a tricky step if you are new to this industry. 

You don’t want to charge too low, or your profit margins will suffer. Low prices can sometimes indicate low quality in several parts of the food industry. On the contrary, pricing too high means you’ll risk alienating your customers. Getting the balance right is vital for success. 

Set the ideal prices for your food items

Start by investigating your industry and the prices set by your competitors. That should give you a great starting point to determine your ideal price strategies. If you believe in your product value, or you have something unique to order (such as exclusive ingredients), you can price your food items at a high margin. 

Just be sure you know how to show your product value to customers.

Related topic: Dropshipping Profit Margin: An Informative Guide

Step 6: Start marketing your food store

Start marketing your food store

Dropshipping is an interesting business model because it allows you to focus on connecting with customers, while your suppliers handle logistics, such as storing, packing, and shipping items.

However, to make your online store profitable, you need to get your customers’ attention. Now, check out these marketing tips and build a better store.

  • Run Google Ads/Facebook Ads to reach potential customers. Each method owns its respective pros and cons, so it depends on your business needs and budget.

  • Take advantage of social media and create shareable content. Many customers like personal connections, so make sure to have an approachable persona on social media channels. 

  • Write a blog. This is the best way to implement SEO (Search Engine Optimization). You should post new, high-quality content that is keyword-rich and matches search intent. 

  • Build trust by adding reviews and testimonials to your website. Potential customers want to know more about other people’s experiences. So, it’s beneficial to add some to your store. 

  • Use retargeting techniques to boost conversion rates. Do you know that up to 92% of visitors have no intention of buying anything during their first visit? Consider using Facebook/Google Ads to reconnect them later and get them to come back. 

  • Collect visitors’ email addresses. By building an email list, you can connect with potential customers and develop relationships with them.

  • Offer promotions and deals. Once you have the email list, send out customized promotional emails that incentivize visits to your online store. In addition, make sure to cross-sell and upsell by offering bundled or related items.

If you successfully implement these strategies, your dropshipping store will likely see an increase in traffic and sales. 


Running your dropshipping food business is really an exciting and often profitable way to bring your entrepreneurial dreams to life. 

Just remember, you will need to be extra cautious when following the law and choosing suppliers. The food industry is actually a highly regulated one, and a minor mistake could wreak havoc on your brand. Be cautious, and always do research before jumping in.

About the author
Hien Tran

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