First and foremost, we just want to express our most sincere gratitude to everyone who has supported us from day one and all of those who have started to since! Each and every one of you (our customers and friends) have made what we do possible!
I think I want to start from the beginning to bring to to the current situation (as best and in as little words as possible.)…
It all began almost a year ago:
Matthew and I had been making raw food for ourselves for about a month (and had eaten ALL raw for a month, after being vegetarian for YEARS.) We were having so much fun with all of the new raw creations we came up with and felt better than ever. We started sharing pictures of this food on facebook and giving some to friends to try. The overwhelming response was that we needed to get this food out into this community so that EVERYONE could have access to it. We agreed– mainly because we felt that if we had nowhere that we could go out to eat without only ordering a salad, then there must be others out there with the same problem.
We had heard about the food truck scene in Durham and figured that without much capital to invest (we really had none,) the food truck would be the most logical thing to do. We got a loan from a family member and then proceeded to buy a HUGE chevy stepvan to use as an all-raw food truck, only to learn that with a food truck, you must also have a commissary (certified) kitchen AND no prep work (i.e., chopping, food processing, blending– EVERYTHING you have to do to make raw food) can be done on a truck! What, we can’t make ANY of our food in this HUGE truck we just purchased? Hmm, well that was a problem. So we scratched that idea and sold the truck on ebay.
So then HOW were we going to get this food out to people? A delivery service! We could make enough food for people to have for a few days at a time and start a weekly delivery service! We got a business license and joined the Cookery and the rest is history. I might add that we really do like to be environmentally friendly, so when we first started with only about 5 customers, we used to deliver in Rubbermaid containers, which we would then pick back up at the end of the week! Once that got to be way too much for us to handle, we switched to all-compostable disposable containers.
All this time, we were still trying to figure out how to let people get food during the week, who didn’t necessarily want/need 3–4 days’ worth of it at their house. If we couldn’t MAKE our food in a truck, then all we needed was some way to sell it already prepackaged. We used what little money we had, bought at VERY old Chevy Astro Van, built shelves and installed a small refrigerator in the back and hit the streets! This actually went fairly well. Those people who knew about us sought us out and got their raw food fix.
This all started in August when the weather was nice. By the thime mid-October rolled around, sitting outside to sell food out of a van just wasn’t working very well, so we used the money we had saved up over those few months and bought a trailer– this was perfect!
We still made use of that old Astro Van by using it to tow our real food trailer. Everything was going smoothly until a few weeks ago on the way to the big Food Truck Rodeo in Durham, the transmission just went out. Now this van has over 270,000 miles on it and it would probably be a huge waste to replace the transmission because something else is just as likely to stop working.
All of this brings us to the present day. Our deliveries are still going strong, but as we don’t want to charge more than people can afford for food, we really make only enough money to scrape by. We have already borrowed enough money and really don’t want to go into debt. If we want to keep our food truck/trailer on the roads, it will depend on whether we can raise the money through a Kisckstarter project. So far the support has been more than overwhelming and we are so grateful that we can’t even adequately express it! We have 22 days left to raise a total of $5000 (we don’t intend to spend more than this because we just need something that works and will pull a trailer.) Also Kickstarter takes a percentage so we won’t actually get a full $5000.
This week we are taking to focus inward and make sure that we still feel like we are on the right track. Regardless of whether or not we can get a new OLD truck, we will continue with the delivery service. But we are also working on other things, such as packaged raw snacks (kale chips, crackers, cookies, etc.)
Thank you for taking the time to read this and we are SO very grateful to be able to serve you the healthy, delicious food your body deserves!
With Much Love,
Jane Howard and Matthew