The Pack Heavy Podcast
95. The immense value of a strong brand identity with Miki Talebi - founder & CEO at oomé

95. The immense value of a strong brand identity with Miki Talebi - founder & CEO at oomé

October 2, 2022

There are an infinite amount of lessons that can be learned when talking to someone who has gone all in and executing on their vision, and today's conversation with Miki Talebi certainly doesn’t disappoint. 

With less than a year under her belt in the operation of oomé, Miki’s startup story may ring true to a lot of you listening with some typical food production hurdles and crossroads encountered.

However, the real gold in today's conversation is in Miki’s approach to the oomé brand identity, packaging development and her willingness to share her personal “why” that is driving her and the business.   

For anyone out there who is looking to take the leap from idea to operational reality - this episode will serve as incredible inspiration, showing just how far you can go in less than a year.    

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Founded in May 2022 and located in Vancouver, BC - oomé embodies the values of great tasting food that is ethically produced, locally sourced, good for the planet and fun! 

With 3 SKUs in the marketplace (Just Smoke, Maple Soy & Greek) and available in a growing number of retail locations, Miki is on a clear mission to celebrate family and great tasting food, while creating a brighter future for our planet and generations beyond us.

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Web: https://www.thisisoome.com/ 

IG: @thisisoome

LinkedIn: Miki Talebi

Email: miki@thisisoome.com 

Brand and packaging design by Tyler Quarles @ https://www.quarles.studio/

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Please support this podcast by checking out our show sponsor

FoodPak: https://www.foodpak.com/

A review and a positive rating will help to get this show into more business owners / operators ears - and if you have any questions or feedback I would love to hear from you : hayden@thepackheavypodcast.com 

94. eCommerce strategy, packaging decisions & building a strong co founding partnership with David Downing - Co-Founder & CEO at ChipMonk Baking

94. eCommerce strategy, packaging decisions & building a strong co founding partnership with David Downing - Co-Founder & CEO at ChipMonk Baking

September 25, 2022

David has a strong background in Accounting (BA, Economics and an Accounting Master's Degree) and has multiple years of experience working for global professional service firms, Fortune 500 companies and a venture capital firm - setting the stage for a great co-founding partnership with Jose Hernandez at ChipMonk baking.

Today's conversation (as with all Pack Heavy episodes) revolves around the startup story of ChipMonk Baking and the highs and lows that entrepreneurship and startup life can bring - but with David's strong background in finance and analytical data crunching, among many things we discuss their approach to their social campaigns, eCommerce & website development and key resources required to keep the business ticking.

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ChipMonk is a specialty baking business that focuses on creating low-carb, no added sugar desserts. Located in Houston, Texas and founded in 2019 their mission is to empower people through mindful nutrition. They use gluten free ingredients, nut-based flours and sweeteners with a low glycemic impact and products that are perfect for anyone trying to cut sugar out of their life.

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Web: https://chipmonkbaking.com/ 

IG: @chipmonkbaking

Email: david@chipmonkbaking.com 

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Listen on Apple, Spotify, Amazon & Google Podcasts

Please support this podcast by checking out our show sponsor

FoodPak: https://www.foodpak.com/

A review and a positive rating will help to get this show into more business owners / operators ears - and if you have any questions or feedback I would love to hear from you : hayden@thepackheavypodcast.com

93. Scaling and evolving in business and life with Erica Rankin - Founder & CEO of Bro Dough

93. Scaling and evolving in business and life with Erica Rankin - Founder & CEO of Bro Dough

September 16, 2022

Many of you who play in the startup and food based CPG world and are active on LinkedIn will be very familiar with Erica (on for the second time - be sure to go back and listen to episode 30.) who has built a cult following on LinkedIn and TikTok largely due to her honest, raw and hilarious content revolving around her primary business, Bro Dough. 

On today's episode Erica gets us up to speed on Bro Dough’s status - now working with a manufacturing partner and packer. We chat about her rebrand, the pros and cons of Entrepreneurship and some critical lessons that she has learned while scaling her business.

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Brough Dough was founded in 2019 and is Canada's first better-for-you edible cookie dough that is 100% vegan, contains plant-based protein and uses natural sweeteners. 

Leveraging everything that she has learned on her social media marketing journey, Erica is now also teaching brands how to grow their social media organically via TikTok.

You can download her course, or sign up for more in-depth coaching where Erica will help you build a social media strategy here 

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Web: https://brodough.ca/ 

Web: https://www.growwitherica.com/ 

IG: @brodoughcanada

TikTok: @brodoughcanada 

Email: erica@brodough.ca 

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Listen on Apple, Spotify, Amazon & Google Podcasts

Please support this podcast by checking out our show sponsor

FoodPak: https://www.foodpak.com/

A review and a positive rating will help to get this show into more business owners / operators ears - and if you have any questions or feedback I would love to hear from you : hayden@thepackheavypodcast.com

92. Entrepreneurship and mum life with Christine Yee - Founder and Owner of House of Yee Fine Foods

92. Entrepreneurship and mum life with Christine Yee - Founder and Owner of House of Yee Fine Foods

September 9, 2022

Located in Port Coquitlam (soon to be Richmond, BC)  and launched in 2016, House of Yee Fine Foods produces premium gluten free dumplings that can be found in close to 100 retail locations from the gulf islands to the Okanagan, Online & Farmers Markets.

Today's conversation with Christine covers so much ground from some critical early feedback that guided the decision to include a pack of sauce with every bag of dumplings, right through to scaling the business, production, marketing and outsourcing components of the business.

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Christine, herself was destined to be in the food business. Her love for food started at a young age while working in the family restaurant in Regina, Saskatchewan - House Of Yee Chinese Foods.

After moving to Vancouver she was inspired to start her own healthy Asian-inspired food line, which resulted in the creation of a frozen dumpling that's made with quality ingredients, has no MSG and is entirely gluten free. To pay homage to her parents and grandparents, Christine named her business House Of Yee Fine Foods.

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Web: https://houseofyee.ca/ 

IG: @houseofyeefinefoods

Email: christine@houseofyee.ca 

Tools of Titans by Tim Ferris 

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Listen on Apple, Spotify, Amazon & Google Podcasts

Please support this podcast by checking out our show sponsor

FoodPak: https://www.foodpak.com/

A review and a positive rating will help to get this show into more business owners / operators ears - and if you have any questions or feedback I would love to hear from you : hayden@thepackheavypodcast.com 

91. It began with a Facebook post - Nic Simon, Founder & Owner of The Real Patty Co.

91. It began with a Facebook post - Nic Simon, Founder & Owner of The Real Patty Co.

September 3, 2022

Located in Surrey, BC the Real Patty Co is another tremendous start up business that first emerged to earn a quick buck at the start of the pandemic, and has since grown into a fully fledged business after an astounding amount of demand for their Jamaican Patties.

Today's conversation with Nic covers the zigs and zags that startup life is all about - from typical production challenges, increasing costs, the value and necessity of automation, marketing and sales (Nic’s bread and butter), right through to balancing home and work life.

The Real Patty Co embodies what it means to be Canadian by merging the flavours from their Caribbean roots with inspiration from all of the culinary diversity that surrounds us as Canadians.

You can stock your freezer with next-day delivery service from Abbotsford to West Vancouver and everywhere in between!

For $5 off your first order of patties, use the promo code - Pack Heavy

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Web: https://eattherealpatty.com/ 

IG: @therealpattyco

Email: nic@eattherealpatty.com

Pie Master - Equipment 

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Listen on Apple, Spotify, Amazon & Google Podcasts

Please support this podcast by checking out our show sponsor

FoodPak: https://www.foodpak.com/

A review and a positive rating will help to get this show into more business owners / operators ears - and if you have any questions or feedback I would love to hear from you : hayden@thepackheavypodcast.com

90. Independent BC Cranberry growers Brian & Mandy Dewit from The Bog | Riverside Cranberry Farm.

90. Independent BC Cranberry growers Brian & Mandy Dewit from The Bog | Riverside Cranberry Farm.

August 28, 2022

In the same vein as my two previous producer episodes with Jeff Ball from Thrive Provisions (e.82) and Brad and Sheila from Natural Farmworks (e.88), today's conversation revolves around the background story of the Riverside Cranberry Farm and the brand that has been built around their delicious Cranberries and products - The Bog.

Cranberries, like many crops are typically sold as a commodity and pooled into the Ocean Spray Co Op, however Brain and Mandy made the bold decision to shift away from this model and sell 60% of their crop independently offering their Cranberries and products to retail grocery stores, wholesalers / distributors and direct to the consumer through their farm stand and online store

We touch on the history of the commercialization of cranberry growing, various Cranberry varietals used, the typical harvesting process, their product and brand development and some critical decisions that have shaped their business model to date.    

During the cranberry harvest (late Sep / Oct) Brian and Mandy open up the farm for tours where you can stroll the perimeter of the field being actively harvested, or follow the self guided audio tour around the farm using the QR Code system and your mobile phone.


Tickets will be available for pre-booking online soon!

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Web: https://www.riversidecranberries.ca/  

IG: @theriversidebog

Email: riversidecranberries@gmail.com 

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Listen on Apple, Spotify, Amazon & Google Podcasts

Please support this podcast by checking out our show sponsor

FoodPak: https://www.foodpak.com/

A review and a positive rating will help to get this show into more business owners / operators ears - and if you have any questions or feedback I would love to hear from you : hayden@thepackheavypodcast.com

89. The first 12 months is a ride with Dana VanVeller - Co Owner and Operator of Brightside Foods

89. The first 12 months is a ride with Dana VanVeller - Co Owner and Operator of Brightside Foods

August 20, 2022

Today's episode is another great example of a business idea kicking around that came to life during the pandemic. Dana shares her experience of getting Brightside from concept to reality - covering everything from some early iterations, product and brand development and pricing strategy.

There’s no doubt that an experienced team capable of leveraging a lifetime of knowledge is on a winning path - keep an eye out for Brightside and let their tasty food blow you away!  

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Founded by the folks who brought you The Burrow (formerly known as Bandidas Taqueria), and launched in July, 2021 Brightside Foods make vegetarian and vegan, restaurant quality handmade frozen meals that are quick, convenient and incredibly tasty!

Their collection includes some Burrow classics like the Habanero Hot Sauce and Cornbread, as well as some original creations like the ever-popular Pinto Pocket, Breakfast Burrito, and Spicy Bean & Cheese Burrito. 

For the remainder of 2022, to receive 20% off your order you can email dana@brightsidefoods.com with the subject line "PACK HEAVY DEAL" to arrange a pick up time on weekdays before 4pm. This is a one time use offer.

Feast: Recipes and Stories from a Canadian Road Trip: A Cookbook

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Linktree: https://linktr.ee/brightsidefoods 

Email: dana@brightsidefoods.com   

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Listen on Apple, Spotify, Amazon & Google Podcasts

Please support this podcast by checking out our show sponsor

FoodPak: https://www.foodpak.com/

A review and a positive rating will help to get this show into more business owners / operators ears - and if you have any questions or feedback I would love to hear from you : hayden@thepackheavypodcast.com 

88. It’s not success, but failure that creates change with Sheila Didomenicantonio & Brad McNish - owners & operators of Natural Farmworks / Tea’d Greens.

88. It’s not success, but failure that creates change with Sheila Didomenicantonio & Brad McNish - owners & operators of Natural Farmworks / Tea’d Greens.

August 14, 2022

As a vertically integrated operation, Brad and Sheila tell the full & entertaining Tea’d Greens startup story. From some hard lessons learned during the operation of a previous business, right through to the development of some custom harvesting equipment and the purchase of their traditional processing equipment from China. 

With some great detailed discussion on their 8 month initial and ongoing market research and product development process, you will find that this episode truly is a great entrepreneurial story that you will learn a lot from!

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Established in 2019 and situated in Bridesville, BC on rich fertile farmland with rolling hills and a pristine view of the stunning Monashee Mountain Range, Sheila & Brad's Tea’d Greens are made from organically grown, hand-harvested, young barley, wheat and oat leaves.

With the guiding philosophy of working in sync with nature using regenerative practices that build soil fertility without chemical fertilizer, herbicides or pesticides, Brad focuses on growing and processing techniques, while Sheila has developed a deep knowledge of herbs and creating synergistic blends with their delicious and unique tea.

For 10% off any purchase over $20 use the promo code PACKHEAVYPODCAST

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Web: https://www.naturalfarmworks.ca/ 

IG: @naturalfarmworks

Email: info@naturalfarmworks.ca 

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Listen on Apple, Spotify, Amazon & Google Podcasts

Please support this podcast by checking out our show sponsor

FoodPak: https://www.foodpak.com/

A review and a positive rating will help to get this show into more business owners / operators ears - and if you have any questions or feedback I would love to hear from you : hayden@thepackheavypodcast.com 

87. The foundation is built, now it’s time to grow with Kyla King - Owner & Operator of Rad Jamz

87. The foundation is built, now it’s time to grow with Kyla King - Owner & Operator of Rad Jamz

August 7, 2022

Kyla generously tells the Rad Jamz story, going into great detail on the major mechanics involved when getting her jam business off the ground and out into the world. Some key takeaways from the conversation revolve around the development of her unique flavours, product testing at Farmers Markets, the game of costing out each Jam and how it has impacted her SKUs that have gone commercial along with ensuring security of fruit to keep her select SKUs in circulation year round. 

Exciting times ahead for Kyla and the Rad Jamz team with an upcoming and innovative shift from jars into flexible stand up squeeze pouches for their Jams, a move into their own larger production facility and a storefront opening in the very near future, along with further distribution of their delicious product!

Another great conversation with a highly passionate and talented Entrepreneur for you all to learn from!

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Located in West Kelowna, BC and founded in 2016 - Kyla creates incredibly delicious and unique jams, jellies, relish, pickles & pies at Rad Jamz and Rad Relish. 

With an exclusive focus on real fruit and low sugar content, Kyla and her team work with local Okanagan farmers to help use up excess fruit that would otherwise go to waste.

Kyla is a Red Seal chef, working her trade from Whistler to Vancouver, over the Pacific to Melbourne, Australia in a 3 hat restaurant and then onto London England working at a 2 Michelin starred restaurant as well as staging in over 20 Michelin starred restaurants in total. After traveling abroad, Kyla spent two summers as a Sous Chef at Mission Hill Winery and two winters as Head Chef at a Heli-ski lodge before starting Rad Jamz in 2016.

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Web: https://radjamz.com/ 

IG: @radjamz

Email: kyla@radjamz.com 

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Listen on Apple, Spotify, Amazon & Google Podcasts

Please support this podcast by checking out our show sponsor

FoodPak: https://www.foodpak.com/

A review and a positive rating will help to get this show into more business owners / operators ears - and if you have any questions or feedback I would love to hear from you : hayden@thepackheavypodcast.com

86. Industry chat & the common thread that binds us all with Andrea Gray-Grant - Founder & CEO at Good to Grow

86. Industry chat & the common thread that binds us all with Andrea Gray-Grant - Founder & CEO at Good to Grow

July 31, 2022

Today’s conversation with Andrea centers itself around food being the common thread that binds us all - and what better way to start the conversation than with a quote by the late Anthony Bourdain - “Food is everything we are. It's an extension of nationalist feeling, ethnic feeling, your personal history, your province, your region, your tribe, your grandma. It's inseparable from those from the get-go."

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Andrea started in the natural and organic food industry more than 25 years ago and over that time has built a specialized resume of positions & experience, including time at Yves Veggie Cuisine and Imagine Foods, VP of Sales and Marketing at Happy Planet Foods and Owner of Tarragon Foods. 

As well as being the founder and CEO at Good to Grow, Andrea plays an active role in the business as the Sales, Marketing and Operations Specialist.

Good to Grow has helped literally hundreds of companies launch, grow and expand their products and brands both physically and geographically, and engage with clients through business courses, coaching, mentoring and financial advisory services.

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Web: https://goodtogrowproducts.com/ 

IG: @goodtogrowproducts

LinkedIn: Andrea Gray-Grant

Grow Your Food Business one-day workshop

From The Ground Up Tradeshow

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Listen on Apple, Spotify, Amazon & Google Podcasts

Please support this podcast by checking out our show sponsor

FoodPak: https://www.foodpak.com/

A review and a positive rating will help to get this show into more business owners / operators ears - and if you have any questions or feedback I would love to hear from you : hayden@thepackheavypodcast.com

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