Ilana Taub and Michael Minch-Dixon, founders and directors of London-based Snact, recently raised £11,190 ($14,347) from 306 ‘snactivists’ in 28 days through a Crowdfunding (CF) campaign.
The duo has now launched a trio of “food waste-fighting banana bars” onto the UK market, made from surplus bananas sourced from packhouses that supply retailers and other players in the food trade.
Bananarchy in the UK
Taub, who spoke to BakeryandSnacks in May this year about Snact’s mission to eliminate food waste, told this site that apples and bananas are the most wasted fruit in the UK with more than 1.4m bananas alone being wasted every day.
“We've been aware of surplus bananas for as long as we've been aware of food waste, however, we started making products from apples, because we wanted to do something about British produce and the recipes we developed lent themselves for that fruit,” she said.
“Now, with a bit more experience in [product development] and bringing a product to market, we were able to develop a trio of delicious bars.”
Pack a punch
Snact Banana Bars are vegan and gluten-free; contain less than 130 calories per bar; are made without any flavorings, colorants and artificial sweeteners; come in three variants - Apple & Cinnamon Kick, Carrot & Spice Boost and Beetroot & Cacao Blast – and are wrapped in home-compostable packaging, which reduces plastic waste, too.
Taub said the bars are very different to the company’s first line of snacks – its Fruit Jerky.
No dates (literally): either best before or contained therein
“Firstly, in format, but also what’s in them. Our banana bars are made with 60-65% bananas and a mix of other fruit, veg, nuts, seeds, oats and some spices,” she said, noting that, unlike most other bars on the market, these do not contain dates.
“Our banana bars are a more substantial snack made with wholesome ingredients – probably something you want to have as your second breakfast – while our Fruit Jerky is something you want to munch on when you’re craving something sweet but want to keep healthy.”
Backing the idea
Taub and Minch-Dixon have felt the positivity that comes from Crowdfunding.
The company’s first CF in 2014 raised £13,516 ($17,329) from 273 backers in 35 days, aimed to enable Snact to make its first “proper” batch of snacks.
“This year, we also wanted to bring the idea of a #deliciousprotest out – the idea that sits behind our brand – as well as launch our new line.
“Both campaigns were successful financially but more significantly, both showed us that people get behind what we do,” said Taub.
“It’s exciting to launch the bars on the backdrop of a campaign based around reducing food waste, which is something we’re passionate about and which is becoming higher on the agenda for everyone,” she added.
Win : win
The four-year old company has already expanded from a two-man part-time team to six full-time employees.
“We use to sell a few packs a week at markets, we now sell thousands,” said Taub, noting Snact has helped save over 150 tons of fruit from going to waste since its inception in 2013
“The more snacks we make and sell, the more food we’re saving from going to waste,” she said.
More ‘snactivism’ to come
Snact’s Banana Bars will be available from the beginning of September through Ocado, Amazon, Planet Organic, As Nature Intended, Sourced Market, and independent outlets across the UK, as well as online, for a RRP of £1.39 ($1.78).
Snact is working growing its distribution – both in the UK and beyond its borders – as well as a third product range that it expects to launch later in the year.