Richa talks about her journey beginning at General Mills where she worked as a Marketing Manager, to founding her own brand and starting her mission to help people eat less sugar.
Richa brought her ideas to life by whipping up her first batch of sauces in her own kitchen and selling them at a Farmer’s Market. Richa tells us about a chance encounter with a customer at a Farmer’s Market that inspired her to create what became her best-selling product.
This enabled her to get her product on the shelves of Whole Foods Market and took her business to the next level.
Ken: Welcome to the Physical Product Movement, a podcast by Fiddle, we share stories of the world’s most ambitious and exciting physical product brands to help you capitalize on the monumental change in how, why and where consumers buy. I’m your host, Ken Ojuka.
In this episode, I speak with Richa Gupta, Founder and President of Good Food for Good, a Toronto based brand focused on ketchup, barbecue and cooking sauces made from fresh whole and organic ingredients. She talks about her journey from working for General Mills as a Marketing Manager, for some of the most recognizable product brands to eventually founding her own brand.
She talks about how her desire to not only help people eat less sugar and nonfood substances, but she also had this deeper desire to just make a bigger impact in the world. She talks about how she then she turned these designs or is an action by whipping up her first products in her kitchen and then took them to a Farmer’s Market and began selling. She tells a story of how a chance conversation with one of her customers at a Farmer’s Market inspired her to create what became her best-selling product. She also shares the exciting news of their retail expansion into Whole Foods in the United States and what that means for her business. This was a fun conversation with a down-to-earth pragmatic and inspiring founder. There’s a lot to unpack in this episode. I hope you enjoy!
Alright. Hi Richa. Thank you for, uh, for jumping on with us today. I appreciate you taking the time. How are you doing?
Richa: I am great. Thank you for inviting me. It’s an honor.
Ken: Great, great. I look forward to digging into your story and, and kind of, uh, understanding your journey so far.
Um, but first we’d like to kick it off with a quote, um, you know, something that’s impactful for you or something that is as influenced you in some way. Do you have one.
Richa: Absolutely. Um, it’s actually even on our office walls, it’s called, um, it’s by Mahatma Gandhi. And, uh, it’s the, the change you wish to see in the world.
And, uh, this quote meant a lot to me when I started the company before that. And even today it’s like, um, everyday decision making tool, uh, for us. So do you want me to like, should I continue explaining?
Ken: Yeah. Yeah, no, I love that quote, first of all, you know, and I, I, I just think it’s, it’s something that we can all take to heart, you know, and instead of, you know, kind of complaining about the things that are wrong in the world is, you know, jump in and kind of be that change.
Um, but yeah. So how do you, how does that apply to you? You know, like what, what specifically have you taken from that and how has that influence.
Richa: Totally like I, what I loved about the quote was it talks about individual responsibility and leadership and there’s company for good was. Um, in a way, my way of bringing that change.
Um, so when I started the company, I was, uh, working in marketing at a food company, a general mills, um, and I also had a four year old. My daughter was four. At that time, I was really struggling, um, to feed my daughter, the food that I grew up with. So I grew up in India. My mum cooked three times a day, all fresh food.
And here I had 20 minutes at the end of the day to feed my daughter, um, dinner and, uh, and put her to bed because of the time that I would reach home from work. And anytime I looked around to find shortcuts that would make my, um, you know, feeding her easy. They were loaded with first, like a lot of sugars, salts ingredients that I didn’t call preservatives.
And second, you know, working at general mills had taught me so much about all these extreme ingredients that you see on the panels that are not food, um, and what, what they do and why we put in our body. Um, so that insider information combined with mom guilt, um, was really, really vain on me. And, um, just this idea behind creating something.
That not only would make a difference in my life, but also in life of someone else in need came, came from this concept of, Hey, if you can’t find it to be the change, right? Like it’s, you, you, you activate that change. Um, if you’re not happy with the status quo is so that’s how good food for good again, right?
Like that’s the reason why we existed.
Ken: Yeah, that’s awesome. Um, and in fact, that that mom guilt that you mentioned is a real thing. And you know, there’s also dad guilt, you know, I feel it’s sometimes too, and, you know, I roll my kids through another drive-through, you know? Um, so I, I totally identify with that. Um,
Richa: it’s a full-on parent guilt and it’s like, anyone you nurture, right? We created this beings with so much love and care inside of us, and then we bring them up. And we feed them things that we know are really not.
Ken: Yeah. Well, and you, and you love them. You want it you’ll do anything for them. And yet, you know, you run through McDonald’s yet again, you know, um, you know, I’ve been kind of entertaining this thought, but, um, you know, I just think convenience is the ultimate feature, you know, in any product or service. Um, you know, and I don’t think, you know, People, we, we don’t, we put it, we don’t put enough thought into that, but just convenience is huge.
I mean, there’s a reason I run through McDonald’s is not because I want McDonald’s or because, you know, that’s the only place to eat. It’s just, it’s so convenient. It’s so easy. And so, um, you know, it ends up being the default choice, you know? So anyway, I’ve just been thinking about that a little bit.
Richa: No. I agree. I agree. It is. It does, our lives have become so busy. Like I guess the whole, like back in the day, or even if you look 50 years, 50 years ago, people had slightly different priorities. Or even if they had the same priorities, it just had not so many things, not so many things asking for their time. So they had time to make.
And sit down with their family because 50 years ago, people were still making their meals. Or 60 years ago, before a lot of processed food companies came to be, they were still making their meals. They were still eating together. Um, and, uh, yeah. And then, you know, with advent of technology with so many, so many situations and things, um, grabbing attention, We have very limited time left to actually, um, you know, focus on that at the end of the day matter most to us and for our bodies.
Ken: Yeah. Yeah. Um, so let’s, let’s dig into, um, you know, I just want to go back in time a little bit, you know, when you were thinking about starting your company. So you’d mentioned that you worked at general mills, um, what did you do there?
Okay. Any particular products that you could tell us about that you were involved with?
Richa:So many? Um, during my tenure, I managed, uh, fiber, one bars, fiber, one cereal with milk. I managed green giant, um, and, uh, all the Paso, which is the last brand that I was on before I left. Yeah.
Ken: And so was that something that you had always been interested in or how did you even get, get the job and start working at general?
Richa: It’s an interesting story. So before, before Jen mills, I’d worked in fashion. Um, I grew up in India. I knew, I think I was in grade 10 that I want to get into fashion. So I studied fashion and got a job, um, as a designer. And, um, during that journey, it’s actually, that journey is also linked to why are businesses a social enterprise?
Um, it’s, it’s really funny. And I was 19 when I got my first job. Um, and I think three months in, or tier four months in probably my, um, my boss asked me to go visit artisans who do all these, um, embroidery or like hand work on these beautiful elaborate outfits that we use to create. And when I, when I reached there, I was super excited.
I was like, oh my God, I finally meet people who bring. Put on sketch, you know, do this beautiful. When I reached there, I got the shock of my life. These, they were like at least 20 people in a tiny little room sitting around a cot, doing the needlework. There was just as it was a hot day. Uh, it was, you know, just the whole aura was so sad.
And just the contrast of these people who were actually doing the work, bringing, making these outfits where thousands of rupees are living in such really bad circumstances, net a really bad taste in my mouth. And I really, I didn’t want to do that anymore. I felt responsible for what they were going through, but at 19, I really didn’t know what to do about it.
Um, or how to go about it. I come from a really middle-class family, you know, just, you know, we be, we’re trying to make ends meet ourselves. Um, but that, that just left me in shock. Um, and what I did was like, you know, I just changed my role instead of design. I was like, okay, second chance design. I would have to see them again and again, perhaps I can go in business development.
Like he sells to be with fashion, but I wouldn’t have to victimness that. That’s what I did. I moved to business development, um, work in reach Canada. I worked in buying here at the, um, Hudson stay, which is one of the big retail retailers here in Canada. Um, but the feeling came back again, right? Like I think it was 30 and pregnant with my daughter.
When, when I got this feeling back that, you know, you’ve got to do something more meaningful. Um, life is not about buttons and threads, which is what it had become, um, working in fashion, just a superficial mess off, off apparel and fashion was getting to me. So I decided to do, and I was an immigrant to this country, right.
So for me to switch industries, I know I had to go to school. So I did my MBA during my maternity leave. Um, and, uh, and got a job at general mills and I paused, oh, it’s food, you know, has to be more meaningful in fashion. Right.
That’s how, that’s how et cetera, to be honest, like my first year, first year and a half, everything about general mills. Um, cause I was just loving. The company is really good. It’s really, even as an associate, you get, you are empowered to make decisions, to do things, which is incredible. Um, but when I started learning more about ingredients and what was going in the product and why we were putting things in the product, You know that the feeling came back in again, right.
Like I was like, okay, this is not the meaning that I was looking for. I’m not making a positive difference. You know, I’m, I am contributing to bad health instead of contributing to good health. So it’s that personal tug of war. And then personal, like as a mom.
Ken: Y eah. And that’s one of the things I was going to ask you is if, if you know, maybe some of these feelings, um, you know, increased as you became, a parent.
Richa: Oh my god. So much, so much. I think there was something to do with once you see the world differently, once you become a parent. And, and I think that’s what was happening in my life. Right. And so being just all by myself, You know, it’s about me too. Hey, I have another person that I need to take care of. Um, and that changed everything.
Ken: Right. And what kind of world you’re leaving behind, you know, for, for them, you know, You know, that that all starts to become a factor. You know, it’s funny, my, my single self, you know, when I was back in college and stuff could hear me today, I don’t think, I believe, you know, some of the things that I think and, and say, cause I, my mind just wasn’t there at all back then, you know, it’s, it’s completely changed as I’ve become a parent.
Richa: I was a very different person. Like people who knew me, my parents tell me, like, I don’t know what happened to you like this one.
Ken: So let’s, let’s let’s hear about this. So you’re, you’re dissatisfied with. You know, with, with your contribution, wondering if there’s something more, if there’s a better way that you could contribute, what, um, so what did you do, um, to, to then launch, you know, good food for good. How did you, you know, what were your next.
Richa: So, um, I started, um, I, you know, I did my market research, you know, thanks to marketing training, um, on, on, where is the, where is the pinpoint? So I looked at different categories. There are people where, you know, there was demand like. There was white space, um, in terms of healthy, real wholesome food. Um, and I saw at that time and the ethnic cooking sauces like Indian and Mexicans sauces were the first things that I launched.
There was no product on the shelves. Didn’t touch sugar, or like really high sodium or no dairy. They were all loaded with preservatives that you didn’t know what they were about. Um, so I started with that line. I started developing recipes in my kitchen. Um, and luckily, luckily I always loved cooking. I always loved food.
So, so that came easy. Um, and then actually the first year, all I did was go to the farmer’s markets and, uh, do lemonade stand pretty much to test if it’s this idea just in my head or is that, um, for me to. And it was actually true to my farmer’s markets. I got the product ideas for my next lineup. We, our most popular lineup today is, are lining up organic catch-ups and barbecue sauces.
There’s no added sugar. And it was actually one of the consumers who came to me and she’s like, my daughter eats everything that cuts up. Can you please do something about. That’s how we start it.
Ken: Got you thinking. So, so I want to dig into, and now I want to dig into some of this richer. Um, I, I, um, you know, so you, you come with this marketing, um, background, right?
As, as a, as a marketing manager with general mills, what, um, what specifically do you, did you do to. Try to figure out what the market looked like and what, what products could do well in, you know, so you mentioned that you did some research, but was there anything specific that you, that you did in order to get that information?
Richa: Yeah. Since you things, when you look at trends, um, you read your monitor or, you know, even now trends are just freely available everywhere and anything you, if any. Category, you’re looking at, if you search for it, you would know, like everyone knows,
like those things have become very apparent based alternatives. And then you look at a competition, then you look at what’s on the shelf right now. And you see if there a gap, like that’s the basic research, um, and even market size information. You can get, once you like a simple Google search will tell you what’s the size of the market.
Um, or you can reach out to government resources. So we have something called OMAFRA in Canada for Ontario manufacturers, you can reach out to them. Uh, they buy a lot of data, so you can always ask them, Hey, can you tell me the market size of this category? Who are the what’s the competitive set, or you just go to a store and check.
Um,but that’s very Ontario based.
Asking me a difficult question. I have to Google it now. Yes, it does stand for Ontario manufacturers, something, something, but that’s something, something is what I have to find.
Ken: Got it. But the general principle is that, um, they do have some of these organizations that buy a lot of data and.
Richa: Exactly. So it’s called Ontario Ministry of Agriculture Food, and Rural Affairs.
Ken: It just rolls off the tongue. Right.
And so, okay. So you’re, you’re, you’re you’re based in Toronto. Is that right? Um, but you would say that there are, you know, these organizations kind of, kind of wherever you look, you could, you could find some information there. Um, and so you just called them up and you asked for this, did you have to pay anything to join the organization or?
These organizations are started pretty much by governments, right? So they want to help businesses. Um, yeah, and then they are happy to provide you guidance on, you know, where, how so? I think anybody starting a new business should look at government resources. There’s so many, like people just don’t, there is no one place where you can find everything, but, uh, but there are so many free resources.
Like we got so many grants from the government to help us with different things. Um, so it’s, uh, you know, In different places.
Ken: You mentioned also, uh, finding the trends. And so some of this marketing data from these government resources, you know, might have some of the trend information, but, you know, you mentioned, you know, plant-based and clean eating and, you know, if somebody wanted to dig into and learn more about some of these trends, I mean, you know, let’s break it down for them.
What, what would you recommend that.
Richa: Um, to be honest, I, you start everything with Google research. Um, Google is the tool and I try and look for sources where they, where they are getting the data from. And if they’re reliable sources, like let’s say Euro monitor, um, or it’s, um, um, Research paper, um, by an organization then you know that these are like two sources, um, versus, um, a blog written by anybody.
Right? So, so again, it’s a critical thinking, right? Like, don’t take any information that’s available online, as long as you. Um, what to look for? Um, so some of the reliable sources I would say for trends would be at least in the industry that I am in would be Udall monitor. If you’re looking for tech, I’m sure there are, there are different tech portals that talk about trends.
Google trends is also another great place. Pinterest trends is also another great place to look for. What is it that people are talking about? What is it that people are looking for? Um,
Ken: Right. Yeah. And I think those are some great resources. Thank you for expanding on that a little bit. Um, I’d also wanted to touch into, okay.
You went to farmer’s markets, um, was that intentional from the beginning? Did you know that that’s what you were going to do or did you just try it and it seemed to be working so you can you continue to do it? What was your, what was your feeling about farmer’s markets?
Richa: Yeah, I knew, I really watched that was part of the business plan because, uh, working at the mills.
Whenever we did these focus groups, the information that you got out of there was just like, I felt it was unreliable when you’re paying these people to think about things that they normally don’t think about. And then your answers are all influenced by that the money exchange. Um, so I wanted to create an atmosphere where I am making my decision based on how consumers are actually.
Consuming the product or whether they’re buying X flavor or not. Um, when they come and the interaction that I have with them on week over week, over week, um, talk to me about what are they liking and not liking, um, and which direction I need to go in.
Ken: Right. Yeah. And, you know, I think it’s a trend that we see, you know, I think it’s always a good idea to go in front of potential customers. Right. And whether that’s at a farmer’s market or in some other way, but you know, somebody who would actually have to reach into their pocket and buy from you, that’s like the best data that you can get.
Richa: Exactly. Exactly. Like how, you know, it’s again. People say more different things than what they actually do.
So judge them on what they do, take the information on what they actually do, because they’re more likely to do it versus.
Ken: Right. So I kind of want to paint the picture of this first farmer’s market that you went to. Um, what was the product and, and, uh, I guess you, you set up a table and then, and then what else?
Richa: It’s so funny. You’re you’re taking me back. So I started the company in September, 2013 has been, you know, that was our test. Um, I was just calling different farmer’s market to see if I can get, because I live in Toronto, right. And vendor, usually there aren’t many farmer’s markets that I could get a spot in the summer farmer’s market next year.
This one market that said, Hey, I have a spot starting up tour. It’s an indoor first. Like, would you like to join? I’m like, oh, I don’t even have the products in. I don’t even know where let’s sign up. Right. And then you’ll see what happens. So anyhow, I signed up and we reached there and then at that time I had like, I need them in a Mason jar.
So I rented a commercial kitchen because you’re contracting naked out of your house. Meet the product. Pakistan in Mason jars looked like a hand tag somewhere. I should have a picture of that handwritten hand tag, a tiny printed label, you know, like really crafted according to me at that time, a small banner.
Um, and, uh, yeah, and then, you know, went there. My husband was so supportive. He drove me there. Um, set up a table. Um, and then, yeah, and then waited. And I was so nervous. I’m like, oh my God. Because even in farmer’s market, right. It’s not. Very multicultural crowd that comes to farmer’s market. It’s very, and it’s even the products.
Most of the products that you get at farmer’s market are usually just vegetables or jams and jellies. So it was a very unique product for the farmer’s market as well.
Ken: Just to be clear, what was the product? Was it catch-up or was it
Richa: no no catch-up so it was Indian cooking sauces, Mexican cooking sauces, and I had three dinners.
As well, so yeah, so, so again, nobody had heard off. So, so it was very interesting experience. A lot of consumer education, a lot of talking, not a smiling. I took a picture of the person who bought the first jar. Actually. She bought it even before the market opened.
Yeah, she was in the early and then she tasted it. She was like, yeah, I’ll take this. Like, oh my God. That was so happy.
Ken: And, uh, what was, what were you charging for a jar of this? Like what was that one sale worth? And was that a good price? Was that, you know, you increased your prices since then? Or what, what did you learn about the prices that you initially went out with
Richa: Little bit, because at that time it didn’t account for the distribution, the broker markup, the retailer markup, not by a lot. It’s just went up by a buck. Yeah.
Ken: You know, you’re not necessarily trying to make a profit, you know, with that farmer’s market. You know, I think you can optimize all that later. Then the more valuable part is getting to data and understanding, you know, directly from the consumers, what they like what’s resonating. What’s not all of that.
Would you agree?
Richa: Yeah, totally, totally. I mean, I think first few years, I don’t know any, any money.
Just when you’re launching those people, it’s just hard to make money when you are so small, like at that scale.
Ken:Okay. So you got some, you got some initial feedback, you know? Um, I guess what was that feedback? And then what did you take back to then change your product and start iterating?
Richa: Yeah, so we like we did as we went along.
So if I, you know, and the first market or second market, if people have tried certain products, they found certain things too spicy or certain takes not too spicy. I was able to change the recipes for the next round. Right. And bring them out and then get them to try again. Um, on another challenge, another thing that we learned was at my farmer’s market, my dips did incredibly well because it’s just convenience, right?
They’re all being based at protein and, you know, people can just dip their vegetables and eat it. And that becomes a meal versus cooking sausage cooking. So. So when we launched that in retail, because they were so new to the world and their shelf life was so short and they were fresh. They tanked so some, uh, learning that I didn’t take from there like in Farmer’s Market.
I was standing there, people are sampling and then they were buying. Today I was able to explain to them what the product was. In a retail store that doesn’t happen. Right? You can do one demo. You can do two demos but you can’t be standing there all day long at every store.
To tell people what it was. So unless people know or can understand from the name, what the product is, um, it’s very difficult for it to work in the current retail landscape, um, the way, the way people buy things. So it was important for it to like, there’s a reason why. Uh, Beyond Meat calls it, like there is a Meat Analogue to it, right.
Because if they say, hey, pea burger or extorted pea burger, nobody would understand that.
Ken: Right. And so they need a frame of reference for something that’s familiar with that to then bridge to your product.
Richa: Exactly exactly.
Ken: You know, on your website today, you guys sell cooking sauces, you know, so maybe that, that could be a good example you know, it’s not something that. Um, you know, like you were saying was readily there for them to, to sample, you know, so they didn’t necessarily do that. Great. At the farmer’s market. How did you actually then start, I guess, how did you, how did you start selling that and, and how did you solve that issue, um, that you were having in the retail environment?
Where there wasn’t anybody there to explain it?
Richa: No. So, so different things are cooking, so we don’t even have those dips anymore. So what I was talking about that product that didn’t do in retail and the actually discontinued it. So you don’t, you will not even find that on our website. Um, the cooking sauces did fine.
The dips just did better in farmer’s market. It was just a more convenient item for people where, whereas as a cooking sauce, like you had to go home and cook with dip, you just take and eat. Right.
Ken: kay. So based on the, on the, on what you heard from farmer’s markets, you were, you were thinking that the dips would be great in retail, but the learning, the convenience of the farmer’s market made it.
Well, well, great. Um, uh, this, uh, you know, I’m intrigued by that story of, of your customer that recommended that you use dates or that you do something about it. Did you, did you already have in mind that you wanted to add dates to it or was that, you know, was that you already looking at?
Richa: Yeah, we were already using dates in our cooking sauces.
So the reason I was using dates to begin with was when in my research, um, All the sugar alcohols that I looked into, any sugar alternative that I looked into had some or the other, you know, negative impact on your body eventually right after you consume certain quantity or in kids that can do this. And you know, it can have this side effect.
And I was creating products for families. I didn’t want to use anything that in long run. Would have a negative impact on people. So dates have existed forever, right? Like people have eaten them in different countries for centuries. Um,
uh, so, so that’s why dates became my because it’s like a whole fruit and they use it as a whole food. We don’t use data extract or date sugar. It’s just like, How not even powder ground update, right? Like if you put date in the blender, that’s where we use, um, you get the fiber and anytime you’re eating fiber, rich sugar.
Your body absorbed sugar slowly. So it doesn’t really spike your blood sugar level that much. And also we use such small quantities. So our ketchup, for example, has only one gram of sugar per serving versus a Heinz that has four grams of sugar per serving, coming from corn syrup, um, or our sugar, plain sugar, right.
Which actually is the same amount as one chips. Yeah, and barbecue sauce is worse. Like sweet baby ray has 17 grams of sugar per serving 17 grams. And do you know how much sugar is in one donut?
Ken: I don’t think I want to know.
Richa: 10 grams, 10 grams. So two tablespoons of sweet baby ray,
a Krispy Kreme donut. We say no to doing that, but we have our barbecue chicken or barbecue tofu. Probably worse than men donut that you would have enjoyed it. He’s gotten that sweet tooth satisfaction.
Ken: I I’ve been doing keto for a few years. And so, you know, it’s kind of taught me to look at the, um, the amount of sugar and all the foods.
And that’s amazing. That’s the hardest part of keto is just trying to steer clear of sugar. Cause everything has a ton of sugar. Yeah. Yeah. And I’m actually looking at your barbecue sauces right now. I’m on your website and I’m drooling a little bit, um, because one of my issues with barbecue sauce is that most of them are too sweet.
So I totally, I totally get that. You know, I want a good flavor, but I don’t necessarily need it to taste like I’m eating a dessert or something, you know?
Richa: Totally, totally. Right. Like, you know, you need good flavor. You don’t need all that sugar. And if you need sugar, you have a dessert wasted. Your main course, right?
Like 60 spoons of sugar added sugar is max. You should eat, you know, for, for, for body to function well, and if I have only 60 spoons to meet, I would rather have it in something that gives me that sweet satisfaction. Yeah.
Ken: Yeah. So that makes, that makes a lot of sense. Um, I want to talk just a little bit about where the, you know, where are your businesses now?
Right. So how long ago was that, that you started the business and then, um, you know, maybe tell us about the evolution of the company since then.
Richa: Totally. So it was September of 2013, just did the company and then, um, We were keeping it very local, very small till about 2017. Um, I was only using fresh local organic tomatoes.
Um, and that was limiting, uh, how I can scale because in Ontario you only get fresh local, organic tomatoes. Um, we live in the country that we live in Canada. I’m not in California. So I was, at that time, I was like, very hell bent on no, I, and then, you know, three years and I realized there was no way I can make this business sustainable.
If I continue. To be at that scale. Um, so I made a decision and I did a lot of research. Um, and I found organic tomato paste is like the cleanest tomato product, because it does not have, so if you buy canned tomatoes, um, they usually have calcium chloride or some other preservatives to preserve the shape.
If you’re by a puree, they usually have something they add. The color, but tomato paste is just tomato. So tomato paste became our savior. And the reason why we were able to expand everywhere from some 2017 onwards. Now we are as available in Canada, all across Canada, from Costco to Walmart, to Loblaws. Uh, all major channels.
Of course, whole foods was our first customer. Um, and we just actually non-state in US at Whole Foods are now available nationally. Um, our cooking sauces as well as our ketchups and barbecue sauces. Um, so super excited about that, that people can find our products. And, uh, I know this is going to be the year when we can say that he donated a million meals.
So one thing I didn’t mention about our product is the company’s called good food. The food is all about, you know, real wholesome food before. Good is also extremely dear to my heart. And I told a story earlier, but forgot to tell what the, for good stands for. Um, so our company is a buy one seed, one venture.
So every time you buy our product, we feed a person in need. Um, so we have roughly at 800,000 meals donated. Um, yeah, so hopefully in a couple of months we should get to a million. Um, you know, that would be a good, um, what’s the right word to use landmark. Is it called landmark milestone? Yes.
Ken: Yeah, well, 800, 800,000 is not so bad either, you know, you know, that’s, that’s inspiring. That’s awesome. Um, can you tell us just a little bit about the, the, um, you know, the way that you actually do these meals and, you know, I guess what’s what inspired it? What, what was, what was the motivation behind setting up the company that way?
Richa: Absolutely. So definitely the thing that had been haunting me since I was 19, was to do something for people. Um, are not as fortunate as some of us. Um, and, um, it’s been haunting me since I was 19. Then started haunting me when I was working in, when I was doing my MBA, actually I discovered Tom’s shoes and that, uh, that just stayed with me.
I knew. And even my business plan, actually in my, in my MBA, I did a social enterprise in my entrepreneurship lecture. Plus social entrepreneurship plan that he’s gotten in the school. And that’s fine. I’m sure there are many new social entrepreneurs since then, but. Um, yeah, that was the plan. And then I knew if I would ever do something of my own, it would have that component.
So when the good food idea came to be, we had to, I had to make sure that it’s part of it from day one and we made sure it’s part of our name, actually good food for good. Not only is our name, it’s our promise to the world, but it’s also like our decision making tool. So anytime we have to make a decision, people ask us, Hey, why don’t you have plastic squeeze bottles, all catch-ups come.
And plastic squeeze bottles. It makes it sound like, no, I mean, we know what happens to plastic, right? Like only 9% gets recycled. Everything ends up in a landfill. I don’t want to create a product that at some point is causing harm to some other, like it’s not abandoned. That’s sustainable in all aspects, whether it’s for you, but for planet good for people around, but for people who are not fortunate, um, that’s what I set out to do.
So, so our decision-making tool is pretty simple. Yeah. Is it for good is a good food. It’s not happening
Ken: Well, that’s great. Um, well, I, I know that we’ve been, we’ve been talking for a while and even before we started recording and you just started talking, so I know we could talk for a long time. Um, but I do appreciate hearing about your story and congratulations on the us launch.
That’s amazing. Um, And, uh, I definitely want, I want to hear, um, and kind of read your posts when you guys hit a million meals served. I think that’s great. Um, let’s, let’s wrap up with a quick fire round up step four questions for you. And, uh, just kind of the first, the first thing that comes to your mind, um, what’s one tool or resource, um, that, that has helped you the most in your current, uh, in your current career.
Ken: Yeah, I would actually agree that that’s mine. Um, what’s one book that you’d recommend to people.
Richa: Start something that matters.
Ken: And do you know who that’s by?
Richa: Yeah. Blake Mycoskie and I can, I recommend two books, um, 21 lessons for 21st century by Noah.
Ken: Okay. Yeah, I’ll definitely look those up. Um, what is one piece of advice that you give to your 21 year old self?
Richa: I would tell the 21 year old cells to not be scared. Um, I wish I had taken steps back then on my calling, which has made me so happy when I find me was able to act on it. Um, so I did something about it.
Ken: And, uh, is there somebody in your field of work that, uh, that you, you know, that you look up to, or that you’re watching, that you would love to take the lunch?
Richa: Oh my God. Yes. How can I hit? I am pathetic at his last name. I’m really bad, but you all, he founded Patagonia. Um, and I am terrible saying his last name.
So I’m not going to say that because I’m going to.
Ken: That’s okay. We can look him up,
Richa: but his last name is showing arch. Most likely, but yes, I would like to, if I learn how to say his name, I would like to take him for lunch.
Ken: Maybe, maybe before you sit down and start eating, you should figure out his last name. Well, Richard, this has been great. Um, I appreciate that. Is, is there any sort of parting advice that you would leave to, to other entrepreneurs that are, um, that are running physical product businesses?
You know, what, what would your advice be?
Richa: Um, in a Physical Product doesn’t, especially in business, there’s so many moving parts that it’s very difficult to always be. Always be an expert in everything. So I would say, just reach out to people, just ask those questions. Don’t be scared to ask questions. Um, people in entrepreneurial world, at least I found are very helpful.
It’s like an invisible net that comes and helps you reach your goals that you didn’t have when you were working for a corporation.
Ken: That’s awesome. And that is a great place to end. Hey Richa, thank you so much. And uh, I definitely want to reach out to you again. Uh, I’d love to spend a little bit more time talking about, uh, cause marketing and, you know, kind of setting up your company like you did.
I think that there’s, there’s a whole episode just on that alone. So, um, we’ll, we’ll definitely be in touch
Richa: Anytime, Ken anytime.
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