Changing students’ eating habits – one lunch box at a time
It’s often said that entrepreneurs take a problem and solve it. And that’s exactly what Jordana Chin (Nutrition, 2014) has done with her business, Nutri2Go.
Fed up with the lack of healthy but affordable meal options as a student, she started thinking about what she could do to bring about change. Using knowledge from her course, she began to plan and prepare what she was going to eat for the week.
Problem solved? Not quite, she confesses. “It was fine when my workload was manageable,” said Jordana. “But it wasn’t realistic all the time. I was forced to buy food I knew wasn’t good for me and that I didn’t enjoy eating when I got really busy with my studies.”
The sheer frustration led Jordana to develop a business idea to create delicious, nutritiously-balanced lunch boxes for £5 that would be delivered to drop-off points throughout the University. Nutri2Go was born. But how to develop an idea into a business?
“My passion and motivation to start my own business was mounting, but I had absolutely no idea of what to do next. Then I heard about the Ingenuity competition.”
Building a business
Hosted by the University’s Ingenuity Lab, the annual Ingenuity Competition offers Nottingham students, researchers and alumni the chance to win a share of a £100,000 prize fund to support the development of a business idea.
“It was an intensive time for me,” recalled Jordana. “I was completing my masters and putting together a business plan, which was something completely new to me. But the support and encouragement I got from the University was just brilliant!”
With the help of the Ingenuity Lab, Jordana created a brand and a website, and launched her first meal options. With an ethos of creating lunch boxes that are delicious and good for you at the heart of the business, Nutri2Go has quickly developed a winning reputation. Painstakingly sourcing environmentally friendly products, and catering for a broad range of dietary requirements, Jordana and her small team hand-deliver the lunch boxes by bike.
“You have to be passionate with a capital ‘P’ about what you’re doing because it’s hard work,” laughed Jordana. “You’ll learn new things along the way and will make plenty of mistakes. At the moment, I create all the recipes. I also do the cooking, the deliveries, and the accounts, and on top of that, I’m building the brand and drumming up new business. It’s intense and I love it.”
Jordana attributes her drive and focus to the positive feedback she has received so far. With glowing reviews from her customers, including athletes based at the National Watersport Centre who ordered from Nutri2Go before the Rio Olympics, Jordana has big plans for the future.
“My father runs a successful business in Malaysia, so his input and advice is invaluable. I regularly use him as a sounding board, as well as my mentors and peers at the Ingenuity Lab.
“I want to be on every university campus in the UK. Eating well on a budget, especially when you are pushed for time, can be hard but not doing so has so many consequences on our health. That’s why making Nutri2Go a success is so important to me. And I’ll get there, one lunch at a time.”
Ingenuity17 competition – apply before 27 January!
There’s just one week left to enter this year’s Ingenuity Competition. With a prize fund of £100,000 once more up for grabs, don’t miss out on your opportunity to get your business idea off the ground.
Article and images courtesy of Great British Mag.