MATCHA MATE - Peta Shulman
For our September Matcha Mail, we were so lucky to have Peta Shulman as our Matcha Mate - the incredible founder of GoodnessMe Box! Who better to sit down with for a catch up Q&A than the woman who is making health and nutrition so much easier for so many people? Peta took a leap of faith and featured our Mix N Matcha in the GMB very early on in our matcha mission and we couldn't be more grateful for her belief in our little superfood superstar. It is wonderful matcha mates like Peta who have helped us get where we are today - couldn't be happier to have her back for a chat and hear a bit about her own journey in building a business.
What food item could you absolutely not live without?
I couldn’t go past a beautiful piece of salmon. My friends often tease me when we go out for dinner. They know how much I love pink fish so my order is often a no brainer! I know most would choose something sweet, chocolate or ice cream, but I absolutely adore salmon.
Do you ever eat junk food? If so, what's your weakness?
When you mention junk food I think of sugar-laden lollies, chocolate and fast food. I have never been a fan of lollies, but of course I do love refined sugar-free chocolate and hot chips have always been a weakness.
Do you like eating out or prefer to cook?
I like to do both. I am certainly not a master in the kitchen so I like to cook simple and easy meals. For a catch up with friends discovering new restaurants is always part of the fun and I couldn’t go past a Sunday brunch out.
What's your favourite cuisine? Favourite restaurant?
Can breakfast be a cuisine? I am a big breakfast lover! When choosing a cuisine Vietnamese is my absolute favourite. The style of cooking using such fresh ingredients and herbs creates amazing flavours. I also enjoy a Mediterranean twist on meals. For dinner my favourite spots are China Doll and Lock Stock. Breakfast I can’t go past Nelson Rd Tuckshop, Shuk and Bondi Wholefoods.
What's your favourite matcha related recipe?
I like to add matcha to my morning porridge. This recipe is pretty simple.
Gluten free oats, teaspoon of matcha, coconut milk, pinch of maca, half scoop of vanilla protein powder stir together and cook in a pot over the stove until it is the desired consistency. Top with a drizzle of almond butter or lately I have been loving tahini.
Describe your exercise regime.
I try to avoid high-intensity training and cardio as over the years I have discovered my immune system cannot cope and I end up unwell. I mix it up during the week with Pilates (we are lucky to have a KX Pilates downstairs so I have no excuses), weight training and walking. Lately I have been trialling a personal trainer once a week so I can get more familiar with the equipment in the gym.
Top 5 health and wellness tips (other than subscribing for GoodnessMe Box)?
Become a savvy food shopper. Learn to read the ingredients and nutritional panel of the foods that you purchase. There are some clever marketing techniques out there so it is important we know how to ‘outsmart’ the food industry.
Shop for food as close to its natural state as possible and search for foods that are GMO-free. This forms our philosophy at GoodnessMe Box.
See a health practitioner. I am a big believer in not self-prescribing or self-diagnosing be it with supplements or cutting out food groups. Food can be so powerful to help heal so make sure you find out what is right for your body.
Sleep is essential to your health and wellbeing; don’t underestimate the value of a good nap.
Stress contributes to our overall health more than we realise so find your ‘me’ time to relax whether it be meditation, walking, exercising, painting, writing etc.
How did you come up with the idea for the GoodnessMe Box? Were you already in the industry? Did you think it would take off like it has?
I was working in public relations in the preventative health industry for about five years. This was well before health had taken off like it has today and had become something aspirational. We were constantly pushing for the media to take a look at another side of medicine and natural health, which is where I must get my persistence and tenacity. I was working alongside the most cutting edge health food products, supplements and integrative doctors who were presenting their research and studies for the first time in Australia and it blew me away. Our society was living on a sickness model of health, just addressing the symptoms, when we should be working towards a wellness model of health and getting to the cause. Ironically I was unwell for a number of these years with constant headaches, low energy, fatigue and colds which became my ‘normal’. After visits to multiple doctors I eventually discovered I had an autoimmune condition which affected my immune system. It was not until I changed what I was eating that I understood the true impact of food. My progress one year on and now two years on has been astounding.
Together with this realisation and passion for health the concept of GoodnessMe Box formed. Inspiring others to discover a healthier lifestyle and making it more accessible and exciting. I wanted others to understand what they were putting into their bodies and that delicious food choices do not need to be compromised for good health. Combining my passion with my core skills I had learnt throughout my PR and marketing years was essential.
I didn’t know the business would take off to the extent that it has today in such a short time period, but I was quietly confident that my execution for the business launch would be successful. I had an acute understanding of my audience and the media landscape. At the end of the day, you have to have faith in your idea and vision because if you don’t back yourself nobody else will!
Similarly to us, you were one of the first to market with your idea. Now, there are an increasing number of similar boxes popping up now – how has this been for you and what have you done to stay ahead?
To stay ahead we are constantly innovating at GoodnessMe Box and have a number of new projects in the works, which we are excited about sharing later this year and in 2016. It is always important we stay true to our beliefs. Discovering food with integrity and inspiring others to join what we call the wellness revolution is central to our purpose. Everything we do at GoodnessMe Box is personal which sets us apart from the rest. From the way we work with the food companies, how we choose the products, curated by our health practitioners who care deeply, to speaking to our customers one on one.
I have a sign up in my office that says “I am as proud of what we don’t do as I am of what we do”. We are very strict about sticking to our values and ethics, no matter how tempting an opportunity may seem.
We also ensure our box has products that cater to everyone’s dietary requirements, be it gluten free, dairy free, vegan, sugar free, paleo or organic. Our sense of community is unparalleled as we foster engagement, questions and conversation around food and how we should be eating for overall wellbeing.
Top 5 tips for anyone starting a business in the industry?
Understand your customer. You can’t be everything to everyone.
Persistence is key. You will get shut down, you need to get back up and try again.
Have confidence in yourself. Your belief in your business idea is contagious to every person you meet.
Know your why. Your higher purpose will drive you to use your business as a vehicle for change.
Ask yourself “what am I passionate about and what am I good at”. These 2 factors combined should make you unstoppable.
You can’t be good at everything, identify your weaknesses and ask for help.
What’s next for the GoodnessMe Box?
We have a ground-breaking event coming later this year, more will be revealed in the next few weeks (keep your eyes and ears open), we are about to release our first recipe e-book which has been born out of our remarkable GoodnessMe Box community and we will continue to inspire and educate about the remarkable foods available. Eating well is fun and we want each Box received to make a change.
Find out more about GoodnessMe Box on their website - click HERE.