Benjamin Angus sells organic vegetable and fruit juice blends at Grey Lynn Farmers Market on Sunday mornings.
Where did you grow up?
I grew up in Auckland on the cusp of technology breakthroughs – I remember dial-up internet, “brick” mobile phones, and CRT televisions. I remember getting the first Play Station and playing Crush Bandicoot for hours, but I got bored and would regularly escape outside for a skate.
How long have you been skating?
Since I was nine years old – I love it to this day. When I got a driver’s licence, I naturally extended skating into surfing. I love getting outside and connecting with nature – surfing, skating, or walking.
What did you do when you left school?
I studied marketing and management at Victoria University in Wellington. I learnt a lot but have learnt so much more through physical experience, getting this business up and running has been the greatest learning experience.
How did you get from university to your own business?
When COVID hit, I was managing a direct marketing sales team, with dreams of travelling around South America. Instead, border closure meant that I spent six months travelling the South Island, immersing myself in nature and solitude, reflecting on what is important to me and planning my new venture.
What was your vision?
Mostly, I want to celebrate nature by creating a product that is good for health, made from nature’s fruits. After doing a five-day juice cleanse, I felt energised and lighter in mind – not just in body. Raw juice can impact people in a profound way
Yes – the juice is freshly made before the market, and not pasteurised, so the nutrients remain living, this however comes with a short shelf life (around 5 days). That’s why we offer our three most popular flavours at the market – Can’t Beet’a’root (beetroot, apple, carrot, ginger), Applicious (apple, carrot, ginger), Orange Sunrise (orange, carrot, lemon). By matching our products to demand, we ensure that everyone gets the maximum shelf-life and we minimise waste.
How does sustainability feature in your business?
Everything is designed to minimise waste and minimise our environmental footprint. That’s why the juice is in glass bottles – they can be washed and re-used endlessly. We give customers a discount on their next juice when they bring the bottle back.
And do they?
Yes! They certainly do. I have been impressed by the number of customers at Grey Lynn Farmers Market who are conscientious about returning bottles. They do it because they care about minimising waste, some even decline the discount.
How have your market customers helped your business?
Customers have given me valuable feedback that has helped me tweak and improve my recipes. They have also given me insights into how my business can best serve customer needs. I love connecting with so many people on Sunday mornings.
What’s next for your business?
It’s going online so that people can subscribe to juice deliveries and partake in juice cleanses. I’m also looking for a bigger production facility to meet the increasing demand, allowing us to offer a wider range of seasonal blends and more green juices, overall satisfying more people!
And now that border restrictions have all eased up, what about that dream of travelling around South America?
It’s still there but has been put on hold until my business is more established. It’s a demanding time but it’s also exciting and I’m loving seeing my vision become a reality.
As published in Ponsonby News : October 2022