We have teamed up with Tesco Taste Bud to bring you the very best of new Irish food producers, and tell you all about their products. Today, on Focus Friday we talk to Chilly Moo creators Joanna Lovegrove and Clare Holman.
Chilly Moo was founded by friends Joanna Lovegrove and Clare Holman who were looking for a healthy alternative to ice cream to give their children. Made with whole milk, yogurt and sweetened with fruit juice concentrate, the frozen yogurt is also gluten free, low GI, low fat (less than 3%) and contains no artificial additives, preservatives or colourings. Available in 500ml tubs and smaller single-serve 120ml tubs, the range includes strawberry, mixed berry and the Great Taste award winning banana and strawberry flavour.
- Can you tell us a bit about your product?
Chilly Moo Frozen Yogurt is a tasty and healthy treat! It’s perfect for the whole family but especially the younger ones. It is sweetened just with fruit juice concentrate and is low GI. It is also low fat and gluten free but most importantly, it’s delicious! We have even won a Great Taste Award!
- What inspired you to create your product?
Between us we have 6 kids which amounts to a lot of requests for ice cream! And though we love ice cream ourselves, it’s not ideal in terms of health and nutrition. We went looking for a healthier alternative to give to our own kids and when we couldn’t find one, we decided to make it ourselves with the famous last words ‘how hard can it be’!
- How has your product evolved since it has launched?
We have recently worked on tweaking our flavours and formulation and we are delighted with the results! Chilly Moo is now smoother and creamier and with a greater depth of flavour whilst retaining all its original healthy attributes and we’re delighted that our customers are noticing the difference.
- Who is your customer?
Our customer tends to be Mums buying for their kids. Parents are becoming increasingly conscious of the growing problem of childhood obesity and so want to avoid unhealthy snacks and treats. On the other hand, every parent likes to be able to say ‘yes’ when their kids ask them for a treat and this is where our product is perfect: kids love it and parents feel good about giving it to them!
- What tips would you give to someone who is starting out and wants to launch a food-related product/business?
Be prepared to be in it for the long haul! Very few food business owners become rich overnight but stick with it and you will find it very rewarding. There is a lot of support out there for food start ups: your local LEO is a great starting point and Bord Bia are fantastic too in terms of mentoring and development programmes and then further down the road there is Enterprise Ireland.
- Where can you buy this product and how much will it cost?
Chilly Moo is available in a variety of cafes, independents and supermarkets including Tesco. The RRP for our 500ml tubs is €4.95 and €2.25 for our little 120ml tubs with spoon in lid.
- What does the future hold for your business?
Ireland is a great place for start ups to develop and hone their product and test the waters but our future plans are to really focus on export. The UK alone has a market more than 10 times the size of Ireland! We also have some new products in the pipeline which are of course, top secret but we are hoping to launch them in Spring 2016 so watch this space!!
Chilly Moo is one of the nearly 70 Irish food and drink producers that have participated in the Tesco Taste Bud programme in partnership with Bord Bia. To date, Taste Bud producers have recorded over €30 million worth of sales in Tesco stores, with nearly a quarter of this revenue generated in the UK, highlighting the export opportunities realised through the programme.