Considering the challenges, are there enough business benefits for Snack Fresh? The answer is a resounding yes.
Kamal is keen to emphasise that, in the long run, Snack Fresh is getting a return on its eco-investment. One crucial example is the business’ switch to induction heaters.
“When we first started, we were using gas burners. But just like when you use a gas hob at home, lots of the heat disappears into thin air. Something like 60% is lost. When you apply this to a much larger scale, cooking, say, 200 litre vessels all day, every day, then this becomes hugely significant. So, we did a lot of research, and found suppliers that offered induction heating, which concentrates 100% of the energy into the product you’re cooking. It is far more efficient. It saves energy and reduces cost,” says Kamal.
“It wasn’t as expensive as you’d think, and in the grand scheme of things, you’re going to make the money back through your energy bills within a couple of years.”
More than just clear cost-saving measures, Kamal argues the company’s sustainable USP is also hugely significant in building its brand identity. While this is harder to quantify, the potential impact on profits is invaluable.
“Yes, some of the costs are higher, but in the end, it works out better for everyone and you get a lot of positive brand exposure. Kids are learning about the health of the planet at school now! You can’t ignore these things anymore.
“When it comes to developing our brand, and tools like social media – it's been amazing. We get lots of good ratings and reviews. Word spreads very fast. So indirectly, you’re adding value to your business.”
Despite his success, Kamal remains ambitious.
“We want to broaden our range, and move into different areas, like fresh fruit and veg. But the main goal is to work out how to become 100% eco-friendly. All businesses must make money, but our target is to do so responsibly.”