The goal of Hardly Hustle is to provide inspiration, drive and motivation in a 10 minute read or less. What you see is what you get. This is hot off the press without an editing team.
Jennifer Newman is up.
Who are you and what do you do?
Hi there! My name is Jennifer Newman- I am a nosher, an ingredient conscious consumer, and the founder of JustNosh. We provide honest nourishment, and believe that any food wrapped up in a pretty package should be only made from real ingredients, so we can enjoy, and just nosh.
What did it take / how did you get started?
If you walk into any local market, gas station, grocery store, you will likely come across shelves and shelves of “nutrition” bars. While there may be hundreds to choose from, very few are truly nourishing. The problem: I LOVE bars, and I could eat them all day. After diving into nutrition, understanding food labels, which ingredients to avoid and which to seek after, where organic matters (I can go on), etc I became conflicted, knowing that I wasn’t fueling my body properly with the options available. Granted, there are a small handful of bars I can get behind, but not enough! I’ve had a desire to make my own bar for a few years, but couldn’t create the space for my concept with the daily hustle and bustle, and never being home... until the pandemic. To condense months of time into a few words, the work from home order was the catalyst for the creation of JustNosh. One day, I decided that there had to be a way I could make my own bar, and a business to follow. From about the months of May-October of 2020, I spent my lunch breaks, evenings, and all of the time that I otherwise would have been commuting on iterating a formula (the grown up term for a recipe), figuring out how to create a company, how to make labels and packaging, and how to legally sell food out of my kitchen. On October 14th 2020, I launched my Cottage Food Operation, JustNosh.
What does the future look like for you and your hustle?
One day, my side hustle will be my full time hustle. Right now, my goal is to make progress and grow incrementally. For me, this means improving the formulas for better scalability and shelf life, and to move out of my kitchen, and into a commercial space, where I could ship and distribute JustNosh bars nationwide. I am very happy working my full time corporate job, and want to ride it until the end. That being said, I know JustNosh will be my next chapter.
What drives / motivates you?
I am motivated by a desire to both share something people can feel good about eating in their everyday lives, and to educate the community. I want to help people to understand that food is information, food is fuel, and food can be medicine if we feed ourselves properly. I want people to have access to real food that they can trust. You can trust that JustNosh sources organic where necessary, uses real ingredients, and would never sneak in harmful ones such as “natural flavors”, highly processed oils or artificial sweeteners. You can simply just nosh, with honest nourishment :) Options.
What advice would you give someone interested in doing what you do?
Ask yourself if you’re truly interested in your pursuit, are you obsessed? Is it what you feel you are meant to do? While I am only in the side hustle phase, I know the necessary time and effort requires that you seek to live and breathe your passion. Also, do not be afraid to ask for help! I by nature prefer to give than receive, but learned quickly that this cannot be done alone. Many people have done this before you, they may have triumphed and may have failed- seek to understand and learn from people’s experiences so that you can later give back to those who need advisory.
What has been the hardest part of the hustle?
Feeling guilty that I’m not doing enough, putting enough time in and growing fast enough. I want to put in more time, but I also have to be realistic with existing commitments, and remind myself that so long as I’m taking action, that I am progressing.
What are a few resources that you'd recommend?
Favorite CPG/ Entrepreneurship Podcasts:
In the Sauce
Food Biz Wiz
Food Business Success
How I Built This
Facebook and LinkedIn groups, Startup CPG (tap into the network)
Accessible and Digestible Nutrition Information for those interested:
Dr. Mark Hyman- The Doctor's Farmarcy
Dhru Purohit- The Broken Brain
Anthony Gustin- The Natural State
Bobby Parrish @flavcity
Side or full-time hustle?
Side hustle right now
List the founders
How many hours a week do you work on this hustle?
# of Employees?
When did you start?
Started exploratory phase in May, launched mid October, 2020
How much did it cost to launch?
$3k- Company creation fees, cottage food operation fees, insurance, ingredients, packaging, labels, and some swag ;)
What were your funding methods and ballpark amount raised?
Any call to action?
Product Development (formulation and process help to achieve scalability, efficiencies and shelf life goals)
Website: justnoshbar.com Instagram: @justnoshbar and personal account: @wellfedjenn Personal Linkedin: https://www.linkedin.com/in/jennifer-newman-1b0b8658/