People’s Champion finalist 2018: Farmstand
This plant-powered London food brand wants to make it easier for everyone to eat well, every day. Does its social mission make it your People's Champion?
Start-up name: Farmstand
Founder: Steven Novick
Started in: 2016
Based in: London
Business description: Healthy online and offline brand specialising in sustainably sourced food and drink from UK-based suppliers
The Farmstand story:
In 2006, Steven Novick was diagnosed with cancer. As part of his fight against the disease, Novick changed his diet and made healthy food and drink a staple of his everyday life.
However, adapting his diet wan’t an easy process and Novick found sourcing healthy food in London to be “difficult”.
In 2016, 10 years on, and cancer free, Novick – who was brought up in America living opposite a farm – sought to make healthy food accessible for all. He had a goal in mind to build a sustainable and affordable food business with a menu based on the diet he had used to fight cancer.
To realise this goal, Novick created Farmstand.
Launched in 2016 with a flagship restaurant in Covent Garden, Farmstand specialises in plant-powered (80% of its menu is vegan) and local produce from ethical UK suppliers.
All of its food and drink is free from dairy, added sugar and artificial ingredients and the brand has a green ethos; zero waste goes to landfill and it doesn’t offer water in plastic bottles – enabling customers to access still and sparkling water for free.
Two years on from Novick turning his cancer-free diet into a business venture, Farmstand has evolved into a fast-growth online and offline food business.
Supported by £4.3m in venture capital with investment from Kindred Capital and the ex-CTO of Graze, customers can order Farmstand for delivery, access Farmstand produce in corporate cafes and, within the next year, will be able to visit two new Farmstand restaurants.
This early growth has enabled Novick to build a team of 27 around him with “team equality one of the key things that Farmstand stands for”.
Novick has given all full-time staff shares in the business and has focused on equality across gender and pay; 50% of the company’s board and 60% of its team are women, while the highest paid person in its team is only paid 2.5 times less than the lowest.
Why Farmstand made our shortlist:
Out of a life-threatening disease comes an eco-friendly, plant-powered food brand whose founder’s goal has quickly resonated with Londoners – already serving half a million customers and counting.
Named as one of the 20 most sustainable food service businesses for the last two years and with backing from high-profile investors, Farmstand has all the means to get millions of people eating a plant-based diet. As Kindred Capital’s general partner Russell Buckley asserts “Farmstand is uniquely placed to solve a real world problem”.
Where to find out more about Farmstand:
Place your People’s Champion vote below.