Aldi’s Next Big Thing: The Londoners featuring in Channel 4’s new series including Yumbug Cricket recipe kit

Who are the budding London entrepreneurs vying for space on Aldi’s shelves in Channel 4’s new reality series?

Channel 4’s brand new reality series, Aldi’s Next Big Thing, begins tonight (October 20), as 36 foodie entrepreneurs all vie for the chance to appear on the shelves of Britain’s fourth largest supermarket chain. The series features a number of London residents taking part in the part documentary/part reality contest where viewers will be able to see behind the scenes footage of Managing Director of Buying, Julie Ashfield.

The show is part of Aldi’s continued support of British suppliers and will not only offer viewers a chance to see the competitive elements that will comprise the bulk of the episodes, but a rare behind the scene look at Aldi. Viewers will meet Julie Ashfield, Aldi’s Managing Director of Buying, as the contestants all pitch their products to make it into the final two.

Ashfield will then offer feedback to the whittled down field, who will then have four weeks to improve their product based on the feedback they have received from the Managing Director of Buying and from a panel deliberating on factors such as price, packaging, customer demand, and the ability to scale up.

Joining Julie Ashfield in the three person panel are Anita Rani of Countryfile and BBC Radio 4 and Chris Bavin, of Britain’s Best Home Cook and Eat Well for Less. Speaking on her involvement in the show, Rani said “This has been an incredible journey from start to end. From getting to know the suppliers, visiting their places of production, and even being part of the team at Aldi headquarters. I’m excited to hear viewers’ reactions to the stories, and to find out if they love the winning products as much as we do.”

Chris Bavin also mentioned that “as a former greengrocer, I jumped at the chance to be part of this programme which takes small businesses and offers them life changing opportunities. The trials and tribulations of running your own company, especially in the current climate, are all made worthwhile when a large retailer like Aldi recognises the accomplishments.”

Who are the Londoners taking part in Aldi’s Next Big Thing?

With the series comprising each week of themes, the following London entrepreneurs have been confirmed for the following episodes.

Chinese Cooking Sauces - Lewisham

Theme: Dinner

Danni Hong creates Chinese sauces with no preservatives and 100% natural ingredients. Inspired by her Mum’s cooking, Danni hated supermarket products, so decided to make her authentic and better quality version.

Yumbug Cricket Recipe Kit - Islington

Theme: Dinner

Loveable geeks Leo and Aaron created Insect YouTube videos that were so popular, they felt inspired to create meal kits - sourced from a Cambridgeshire Insect farm and cooked up in their North London studio.

Bar of Crisps - London

Theme: Treats

Unhappy Executive Assistant, Maria had a lightbulb moment to combine crisps & chocolate. Her videos have gone viral on TikTok and people are desperate to get their hands on it!

I Am Nut Okay: Vegan Cheese - Hackney Wick, London

Angela and Nivi make innovative vegan cheeses from nuts, in their converted Hackney warehouse. It started as a passion project when newly converted vegan Nivi, couldn’t stop their cheese cravings.

Vegan Meringues - Morden, SW London

Silvi, from Argentina, makes her meringues using waste chickpea water from a local hummus factory. A real passion project, she saved for ten years to start her small London bakery.

When is Aldi’s Next Big Thing screening?

Aldi’s Next Big Thing begins on Thursday October 20 2022 at 8pm on Channel 4. The show will be broadcast weekly during this time slot and episodes can be caught up through All 4.