Ricky Kawa mentioned they’re out to create the healthiest meal prep in Calgary.
He, together with fellow co-founder Jasen Stein, are bringing Calgarians sustainable, ready-to-eat meals by their firm Menu Mandala.
“We’re within the enterprise of automating your well being and well-being by devoted diet and scrumptious meals,” mentioned Kawa.
Kawa mentioned they need to give their prospects entry to plant-based protein meals, sourced primarily from native producers. Their meals are additionally complete meals and gluten-free.
Stein mentioned they attempt to push the envelope with the meal prep.
“We’ll attempt to sneak in wholesome methods of doing all the things within the meals,” he mentioned.
“There’s all the time one thing fermented in each dish as a result of that’s wholesome on the intestine. We don’t use white rice as a result of it’s processed and never wholesome carbs. We make all our personal sauces, or we attempt to supply domestically as a lot as doable. We’re attempting as many Canadian corporations and merchandise as doable.”
Kawa’s years of kitchen expertise at Calgary eating places, plus his diet program coaching at SAIT, together with private coaching have helped them design the correct of meals.
Stein had expertise as a line chef when he was in his teenagers, however went the route of many Calgarians, and spent 10 years as knowledgeable engineer. He then checked out pursuing his MBA, however Covid-19 sidetracked that as he didn’t need to do it just about.
Then, he and Kawa began up Menu Mandala.
“That was a crash course MBA, I’d say,” Stein mentioned.
Meal prep service at its core
Once you go to the Menu Mandala web site, you place your meals order. You will get certainly one of two sizes: Handy (one individual), or Communal (roughly equal to 4 Handy parts.)
The meal is then ready with native items in a facility the place no gluten or animals have been processed. It’s performed in a kitchen proper right here in Calgary.
As soon as full, the meal is delivered (inside Calgary), able to eat. In essence, it’s a meal prep service like others which have popped up lately.
“One factor that has modified is the price of meals, the time to have the ability to exit, procure that meals, prep it at residence, after which additionally deal with your life in addition to all of the issues which might be occurring exterior of your life,” mentioned Kawa.
“Time is the most important commodity and foreign money that now we have as people and the extra we go on in life and all these busy elements hold coming in, the much less time now we have.”
When you would possibly assume all meal prep corporations are lower from the identical material, Kawa and Stein mentioned they’re dedicated to sustainable meals prep. Meaning limiting waste, too.
Kawa mentioned different suppliers, like Good day Contemporary, you’re getting additional packaging and also you’re chopping all your personal greens – creating extra meals waste.
“We go that additional mile to save lots of all of our veggie scraps, flip it into inventory, which has ventured into soup,” Kawa mentioned.
They’ve additionally bought their thoughts on the group. Final month, within the wake of devastating earthquakes in Syria and Turkey, proceeds from choose dishes went to aid efforts.
Invaluable connections by the Velocity program
The very first thing that involves thoughts, when requested in regards to the influence of the Alberta Catalyzer – Velocity program by Platform Calgary, is the connections.
“I’d say that the primary factor has been the community and the connections — the people who we’ve met, and it’s been invaluable,” mentioned Kawa.
Stein mentioned that this system additionally compelled them to consider areas of a enterprise which might be straightforward to neglect. Issues like governance and company construction.
“That’s one thing we did very early on, and we haven’t touched since as a result of there’s a lot else to do,” he mentioned.
Firstly of 2022, they have been seeing 30 per cent development every month. Then they hit some extent the place they needed to take a step again and re-evaluate future development. There’s solely a lot order-in enterprise.
Kawa referred to as it their first entrepreneurial roller-coaster dip.
“Now we have a brand new trajectory and a brand new projection of the place we’re going to be and now we have a a lot better thought of learn how to forecast and plan accordingly and pivot,” he mentioned.
“It compelled us to get actually artistic and determine that now we have completely different avenues to go after. So, it was a blessing and a curse.”
They’re having meals prepped for native grocery chains. There’s additionally a possibility to do personal catering for bigger occasions.
“It’s been actually distinctive to see the place we may go,” Kawa mentioned.
“There are 4 completely different doorways. It’s a matter of which door we need to select to stroll by.”