It’s been exactly 1 year since I wrote my last blog post for Go Grow (Transforming Myself Into our First mover Target Group) and to be honest, 2016 has been adventurous but also a roller coaster ride!
2016 was a challenge to myself, in order to understand my first-mover target group by becoming it, but also to be a stronger and healthier entrepreneur. On this journey, I also experienced how habits, particularly food habits are deeply rooted in all of us and that change even if It’s for the good of your health, is far from easy. It seems like we are much more prone to change technology habits than eating habits. We want it fun, tasty and easy before anything else.
Being surrounded with different types of startups in CSE and through the Go Grow programme, I started to understand that Food start-ups have different growth patterns than e.g. ordinary tech start-ups. On August 1, 2016 I read the article “Is food unwinaable for start-ups” and it was suddenly very clear to me – like an enlightenment; we simply have to accept that food safety and logistics is a bit of a drag, yet a very important key factor for the business. And as the article also concludes, we have to accept that human beings have emotional food habits(including myself!) and that it just TAKES TIME to get properly into the market of food.
In Roots Food, we’ve accepted the challenge and are still here because, in everything we do, we believe in Feeling good by making healthy and sustainable foods easily accessible with a mission of creating tasty superfoods for the ‘on-the-go’ consumer. And one way of doing it is through collaborations.
Collaborations and partnerships
When we graduated from Go Grow in January last year and with the new enlightenment in mind, my Business Partner, Daniel Alonso and I, decided to get closer to the food industry through partnerships.
We were lucky enough to be selected in the SPININ program that matches startups with SME’s in a knowledge sharing partnership for 3-6 months. We got matched up with The Bagel Co. who has been on the market with 13 Bagel Co. Shops for 10 years. Birthe Thygesen, the CEO, is a true inspiration and a ‘go-getter’ with years of hands on experience, and network that she has been sharing with us in Roots Food. On the other hand, they are in a phase where they are looking for innovation and somehow renew themselves and that’s here we come with feedback and the opportunity to test our Moringa in their stores! We’ve learned that bridging the gap between the Moringa powder to the ’emotional eater’, is through product development, and that’s why we’ve been granted an amount from Innobooster to create our own retail product line of bars and juices. In the meantime, do try the MORINGA JUICE in their ILLUM Rooftop store ;). And keep an eye on our facebook when we announce our Moringa Bites there in February.
Demo demo demo!
We know we are working with a new food, at least new to the West, it’s been used for 100s of years in Asia and Africa, but we quickly learned that; we sell well when we are out there, in the market, giving people samples of juice with our Moringa or skyr (yoghurt) with moringa sprinkled on top. Moringa as a leaf powder superfood doesn’t sell itself and giving people a taster and an idea of how to use and explain that it’s actually the leaves from a three, make people curious.
However, Moringa is not for everyone ???? I clearly remember one demo pop-up in Mad&Vin grocery in Magasin, where I found two elderly ladies, stealing Skyr samples of my working table behind me. Looking back it’s actually quite funny ???? but in that moment, I was a bit insulted because I noticed a lot of people, particularly kids and retired people, who goes for all the free samples in the store and you just KNOW that they would never buy your product – but just mayyyybe they will, because you never really know IF they will! But what they don’t realize is that all of the demos are funded by the startups themselves.
Demo days has giving me a lot of good laughs with fellow food startups, it’s almost like therapy knowing i’m not the only one having the challenges and the ups and downs. I have to give a shout- out to awesome female entrepreneurs, who in 2016 has shared their experience and network. AOMAM juice, KINOA blends and Ezypro10 protein shakes, who uses our Moringa in one of their shakes:D
From the farm to you, and back
I just returned from visiting our farm partners in The Philippines and the warmth of the filipino people still amazes me. I am so proud to see the farm growing and they are getting more empowered every day. We are proud, to tell you all, that until now they only had Filipino Local organic certification, however, now all the papers are done and in 2017 we can call us Internationally Organically Certified.
We work with Moringa because the tree can re-green dead areas and grows extremely fast. The seeds can be used for water purification and the flower is used for cosmetics (check out Bodyshops products!). We not only in this for the world’s most nutritious plant, but because it can do so much for the environment and the local community. This is why we were proudly selected to be one of Denmarks 20 green promising startups by GREEN TECH CHALLENGE!
By buying Roots Food Moringa you support the development and a sustainable business and of course our startup. And if you’ve come this far in reading the blog, I am giving you a discount code of 25% MORINGALOVE until March 31st. (You can enter the code at the very end of your order through check-out).
There generally a movement out there that focuses on sustainable food, organic food and food with no chemicals – GMO free. It’s about quality, taste and functional food but also food with green footsteps.
So, all in all, even if it is a real challenge introducing a new product to a market of emotional eaters, and even if it takes time, we are still in it for the long run, because we want to make a positive contribution to the world and we believe that everything starts with you and I feeling good with our choices.
Remember to check out our website Roots Food and use your 25% discount code: MORINGALOVE & our YouTube channel!