By KAITLIN SECORD
The Mompreneur awards are an occasion dedicated to the support and promotion of female entrepreneurs across Canada. For Beach resident Suzie Yorke, it was a chance for reflection and celebration.
Being named the 2019 Mompreneur Start-Up Award winner just 18 months after the launch of her company Love Good Fats, Yorke said she has “been blessed to have so many successes throughout the explosive growth of my business.”
Starting up Love Good Fats, a keto-friendly bar brand in January 2017 has lead Yorke on a rollercoaster of a journey. Getting the idea for her company came from a combination of personal necessity and trusted research.
“I spent years adhering to a low-fat diet only to hit a wall in my mid-40s. I suffered from IBS for several years, and in 2016 my illness reached critical levels.” Said Yorke
“After reading Nina Teicholz’s Big Fat Surprise, I immediately shifted to a high-fat, low-carb diet and felt better right away. While I loved the health benefit of my lifestyle, I found it challenging to find convenient, healthy-fat snacks. Seeing a gap in the marketplace and a huge opportunity to help others through food, I developed Love Good Fats.”
While the idea for the bars came quickly, as did the growing popularity of them, Yorke revealed that not everything about the process went smoothly.
After successfully developing a bar recipe that was both healthy and delicious came the challenge of finding a company to manufacture them.
“Finding someone who would produce the bars was very taxing emotionally and financially. Several plants wouldn’t even attempt it, so I was elated a large, well-known manufacturer in Canada took on the challenge,” said Yorke.
But this victory was short-lived “After three days on the line, I was informed that they were ceasing production. Having paid for the production out of my own pocket, I was out $80,000 and back to square one.”
This is where Yorke emphasizes the importance of perseverance.
“Despite all this, I pushed on and ended up partnering with an amazing company to produce my original product and who has helped me develop it further. Month after month our sales exceed our greatest expectations.”
Before launching Love Good Fats, Yorke worked in the CPG industry for 30 years. Working for several high-profile companies – such as Proctor & Gamble and Weight Watchers, Yorke used her experience in marketing and her connections to help drive the growth of her business.
“Also, I spent hundreds of hours researching nutrition and potential markets for our bars. We wanted to make a healthy alternative for people who lead busy lifestyles.”
Yorke has a word of advice for entrepreneurs: be brave.
“This experience has taught my tribe (that’s what we call our team) and me to take a chance and be brave. I have always had an entrepreneurial spirit but starting a new business at age 52 was a huge risk.” said Yorke “Had I not taken the chance, I would not be where I am today, leading one of the fastest-growing bar brands in North America.”
Since the initial launch in September 2017 in Canada, Love Good Fats has expanded into U.S. markets and can be found in Whole Foods locations across the nation.
For more information, visit https://www.lovegoodfats.ca