QUESTION – How long has CHERRYCARP been around as it seems momentum is only now starting to kick in for you guys. Many people have only recently heard about you and what is it you are trying to achieve?
ANSWER – This is our fifth year, although we broke away from Solar Tackle over 4 years ago. We were known as Solarcarp then. Our objectives are straight forward and simple really, make a stand against over inflated carp related product and push against the trolling bully and ongoing intimidation in today’s online angling population.
QUESTION – So why the name change and when did this take place?
ANSWER There were so many rumours as to why things didn’t work out with Solar Tackle, some true, some not so true. We still own the name SolarCarp Ltd and still own the domain name www.solarcarp.com. There seemed to be a split camp with the respect of the brand name at the time and we thought we should stand on our own two feet and concentrate less on the commercial drivers and more on the needs of the overcharged angler. We launched CherryCarp at the BIG ONE show in 2016 and never looked back.
QUESTION You say you wanted to concentrate less on the commercial drive of the business, how does that Work? Surely profit is king in today’s carp Industry?
ANSWER – We couldn’t agree more! Profit is king in today’s carp industry and it’s this drive which is turning the game into the commercial circus it is right now. Far too much being charged for far too little given back to the angler. The founders are financially successful throughout other industries and retired early having achieved much through disparate business sectors, however there is no strong need or desire to turn Cherrycarp into a high profit powerhouse. We do what we do because we love carp fishing and as anglers for over 40 years we have watched the growth of carp angling and the gap getting bigger by the year on associated costs, charges and price tags between carp fishing and match, sea and general fishing. It’s ridiculous and uncalled for. I am sure it’s difficult for everyone to get their head around, but CherryCarp’s financial growth and stability will always remain a low priority. We see this project as needed and fun, the minute it becomes none of these then we will quite happily move back into the shadows. For us it was far more satisfying to add our business acumen to our company way of life and concentrate on the commercial edges we could bring to the table in order to help bring great product through at affordable prices.
QUESTION – You say affordable prices, but isn’t it the case that your bait is cheap, imported from KCB Holland and costs you no more than £1 per kilo?
ANSWER – If only it were £1 per Kilo!!!! In fact we wish it were because we would then pass on even more savings to our community. We work with KCB, the biggest bait rollers in the world. We do so because quite frankly we found them to be the best. When we were part of Solar Tackle we started off having our bait rolled in house, but it soon became apparent we had out grown the setup. Martin Locke introduced us to KCB as a strong out sourcing option. We travelled to Holland with Martin to meet KCB to kick start discussions and have never looked back. Many bait companies utilise the outsourcing services of KCB and that’s probably why they are the biggest in the world. I suppose the only difference is that we are upfront about where our baits are rolled
The guys at KCB provide a cradle to grave solution to many companies both here in the UK and throughout Europe by way of providing levels of bait options. As for CherryCarp we only utilise their actual rolling service, although we do tap into their scientific know-how and genius from time to time.
Another rumour was that because our bait was priced around the £5-6 mark, then the ingredients must be shit. KCB work to OUR exacting recipes, the ingredients we use and supply are top notch and another first, displayed on our website. Using sub standard ingredients has a short term result and quite frankly that’s not us, we are here to stay. If using the very best productivity methods (KCB), applying historical proven business acumen, procuring in bulk, adding to the mix we have no advertising costs or massive teams of field testers (cough-cough), we don’t sell through shops and we believe in providing our products at fair prices, then you can start to see why it is we pass on these savings and provide very high quality baits at prices they should be at and not what today’s dreamers sell them at!
QUESTION – We note it’s not just baits you provide, you sell terminal tackle too. Looking at your hook range, how is it you can sell your hooks at just £2.50 for ten where many others sell them for well over £5?
ANSWER -That’s exactly our point. Why do others sell them for over a Fiver? It’s a known fact there are only a handful of quality hook makers in the world and as reseller’s we all source them from the same available Providers! We don’t sell ours cheap in comparison to the available margins and still make a healthy ‘business standard’ profit. This, alongside terminal tackle is where rip off BRITAIN stands rife in the industry. If you honestly think you are getting a cracking deal for ten small bits of metal for a fiver then think on. We appreciate brand loyalty, we also respect brand confidence, but at some stage or another common sense should enter the mind of the angler who in turn should start to challenge what seems right and what seems wrong…surely.?
The prices we charge for our terminal tackle and hooks etc is the show stopper for the trolls. When challenged “your bait is cheap so it must be shit” we refer them to the quality of our hooks or the suppleness of our tungsten tubing or the finest quality tungsten putty and on and on and on….That’s when the trolls fade and die. We don’t sell cheap bait and we don’t sell cheap terminal tackle…..it’s just priced correctly!
If people are prepared to give away their hard earned cash in the belief that what they are using is superior then hey, what can we do? We can’t educate everyone and where we do not advertise in the publication world and carp comics it’s understandable the brain washing exists. Sad, but true!
QUESTION – You guys refer to the carp related publications as ‘Carp Comics’, what’s that all about and why did you make the stand to not advertise and not follow the rest to promote your Products?
ANSWER – A few of us have worked within the publication world and some at quite a high level. It’s not rocket science to note that unless you advertise you don’t get the preferential rubber seal of approval. If you buy a one page advert in say 12 monthly publications, you can also receive page coverage in features. So an advert goes up and three pages on there is a feature telling you that this product or that product is the best thing since sliced bread. The unsuspecting reader gets brain washed and the merry go round goes around and around and around. Interestingly, if you do advertise (at a seriously premium fee) then low and behold, you could just be entered into and win the end of year award! WOW How lucky is that?
Don’t get us wrong, there are some superb writers out there and we fully understand they need to make a living, but it’s not without a piece of heart sold to the devil (ask them). Having spoken to and worked with many of the editorial contributors then they’ll be the first to tell you what a shallow world it is, but there’s nothing they can do. There are a couple of the Mags we do respect and we mean JUST TWO and who knows what the future holds?
As a NON advertiser to the carp comics, we found out a couple of years ago that by not playing ball we were branded ‘non-conformers’ and banished as NOT being taken seriously by the ‘all and mighty ‘carp publication world. It’s no secret our baits have accounted for many, many captures both here in the UK and on the continent. Many have been submitted by the angler to the comics and with every single detail stripped out about what bait, what products etc it’s just made us more determined to work against them. In fact it’s become quite a hysterical past time watching them NOT printing the detail. For us it’s giggles and entertainment, for them it just works against the very ethos that keeps them alive.
QUESTION – You seem to be quite opposed to how the carp industry behaves, what exactly is it that sticks in your Teeth?
ANSWER -The biggest issue is one of over- charging for sake’s sake. What’s that About? Why can the other verticals within the fishing industry live and play harmoniously and retain acceptable profit levels ensuring healthy business, but the carp industry has to charge you through the ring because it’s ‘Carp fishing’. We don’t see the justification. If you really think paying £12 for a kilo of carp food is the right thing to do, then be our guest, but if you think the ingredients within are worthy of such a price tag then you’ve gotta get help and quickly!
A lot of the big bait Co’s have their ‘field testers’ buying at cost. Anything from around £3.50 per kilo for cash. I’m sure you can do the maths. We respect the shops and believe there is a need for them, (We still remain loyal to our own local tackle shop), we respect they too need their margins, we get that, but even these guys are strangle-held and beaten up to sell high. TOO HIGH! We agree with fair trade, fair business, but across the board in carp angling it’s beyond acceptable. Whether bait, terminal tackle, luggage, or the latest head Torch! It’s a mad industry and the biggest difference between high quality camping products and high quality carp related products is about 500%!!!!
QUESTION – What’s behind the Facebook group ‘CherryCarp Community’?
ANSWER – That’s simple. We wanted to create a safe place for our anglers to talk carp fishing without the bullshit, the super egos, intimidation and bullying trolls. A place to celebrate captures no matter the size without being smacked-up for not capturing a 40 on every cast! Of course it’s CherryCarp aligned but our members know it’s a passionate pastime and only fishing. Some of the forums out there seem to be a nigh-on breeding camp for bait battles. It’s crazy if you think about it. Doesn’t make sense to us. Yes it’s a sport of sorts, and a passion that gets under your skin, sometimes good and sometimes not so good but the hatred and the vile that comes from the trolling is far beyond acceptable today. Trolls don’t last long in our community, it seems our community members stand together and turn on them too. Good on them! So a safe and fun community in which anglers can call home, that can’t be bad can it?
QUESTION – So what does the future hold for CherryCarp, where is it heading and what are your key Objectives?
ANSWER – Well of course it’s a business, it has to be just to operate daily, but without our own fishing and personal carp aspirations it would be pointless. In a nutshell it’s not driven by profit or commercial gain, we remain well funded and comfortable which we suppose makes us miss understood or potentially dangerous. We refuse to suck up or be part of how the industry operates today, its ridiculous but it is what it is. Whilst we’re trading and we are all enjoying the journey and more importantly there’s a need for what it is we do, then we will continue regardless, the minute these requirements diminish we will pull stumps and just enjoy the fishing with the friends we have made along the way.
Put together by all behind the scenes at CherryCarp!