Did you know that our Member School parent communities are thriving hot beds of simply brilliant people! We are so enjoying the opportunity of connecting with some of them and being able to share their stories with other members of the School Notices community. It’s all about celebrating and supporting one another.
This week we shine the spotlight on Emma Pike, Founder of Hong Kong’s number one online butcher Farmer’s Market and alumni parent at German Swiss International School.
Tell us a bit about yourself and what makes you get out of bed in the morning!
Some people say I have a “need to please” disease and I guess it is true because I love getting up and making a difference in other peoples lives either by food, education or just making them feel happy and that’s what makes me get up and go to work each day.
What was the journey to get you to where you are today?
It’s been a long journey from leaving school at the age of 15 and starting my first business at 16 to now Farmer’s Market being around my 5th or 6thbusiness. I think I’ve managed to be a life time entrepreneur by looking for a need in the market and then just jumping in and grabing it with both hands. A lot of hard work goes in to starting and running a successful business and you will have fails along the way which help you get back up and try new things the next time. The main thing that has gotten me to where I am today is hard work and being able to do what I love which is building business’.
Have you always been interested in food?
No, I was in the IT world most of my life until I saw a need for better quality food in Hong Kong at better prices. Then I thought to myself “what could I do with IT to get in to this field”, so I did some research and found out it wasn’t that hard to get good quality products at a reaonsable price in to the country and I could sell them online. So from becoming interested in the food industry I basically had everything set up in a few weeks because of my IT background and launched. Since starting I’ve obviously gotten more and more in depth into the food industry and have recently completed my ‘Meat Science’ course with Meat & Livestock Australia as well as multiple other courses to help me improve the products and education I can then pass on to our clients.
How and where do you source your suppliers?
Mostly from Australia. People think you walk farm to farm and find good meat but Australia is massive and you just can’t do that. We find a lot of suppliers from recommendations from Meat Livestock Australia as well as attending multiple food exhibitions around Asia talking to potential suppliers and if we think they may be a good fit then we go and visit them and investigate their farming methods and make sure they sit well with our model, which is to provide good quality meat and seafood sustainably without any growth hormones or antibiotics so they are as natural as possible.
Where are your markets and are there any more plans for expansion?
We are currently the Number 1 Online Butcher in Hong Kong which is great and have now also opened in Singapore. Potentially we will look at the Thailand and Dubai markets in the future for growth to hopefully become Asia’s Number 1 Online Butcher.
What new lines would you like to see introduced into the business?
We try not to expand too much, we want to be your local butcher not supermarket and I think with some people expanding too much they tend to stretch themselves and then start to take short cuts on quality so for the moment we will stick with meat & seafood and may partner up with a wine and/or cheese vendor to add those items in the future.
Have you seen a change in what food people like to buy?
Yes, I think more and more people are price conscious as well as concerned about what they are eating. So rather than people eating meat everyday people are becoming conscious about eating better meat less times a week, which I think is great! If people just eat meat to eat meat I don’t think it’s good for their health or the environment because that meat is normally cheaper meat and not produced in a great way. Nowadays people are choosing to eat meat a few times a week and are asking “where is is from? How was it raised? And was it treated humanely?” which is awesome.
“The trend isn’t changing on what people are buying and eating but it is changing on the quality of food they are buying and eating. Sustainability is incredibly important for our environment and Farmers Market are leading the way on this.”
What else would you like to see more of within the food industry?
Transparancy and Education. Often people are saying they sell “Australian Beef” which is great, Australia has great beef however beef from Northern Australia is very different to beef from Tasmania, beef which is grain fed is very different from grass fed and so on. So I think if we educate our customers more, which is something Farmer’s Market trys to do then the consumer will be able to make a more educated purchase on what they want for their families.
Tell us what a regular weekend holds in store for you and your family?
As a mother of two my weekends are often full of kids sports from Rugby, to Touch Rugby to Golf, Tennis and more but outside of chasing kids all around my husband and I love to eat out so we often eat out with friends or famliy on a Friday or Saturday night. I love spending a lazy Sunday afternoon out just people watching whilst having a few drinks until I realise that is is Sunday and then chasing the kids to make sure they have their homework all done for Monday!
The Farmer’s Market are offering all School Notices Members $100 OFF their first order on a minimum spend of $500. Get your Member Offer code here