“In the US, we have to explain the product a little bit less than [in Europe],” co-founder of Your Super Kristel de Groot told NutraIngredients-USA.
But everything else—from package design to branding to the back story—translates just fine on either side of the Atlantic, she added.
De Groot launched Your Super together with partner Michael Kuech back in 2015 in Amsterdam. The company’s conception story is a personal one. “It wasn’t driven by consumer macro trends, but rather a personal story—five years ago I had cancer at the age 24, and recovering from that, I realized how important food is and how important it is to provide your body with the right nutrients,” Kuech said.
First, De Groot prepared different fruit and vegetable dishes to help Kuech bounce back up after chemotherapy sessions. “Then I started making different blends, and then I realized that [Kuech] was actually using it, and I started giving it to friends as well,” De Groot said.
“This is when I realized that it made it so much easier for people to use. We realized that creating different blends with their own functions, without any added sweeteners or natural flavorings, just freeze-dried whole foods—that is something that consumers were really looking for.”
Today, the line has seven varieties—Skinny Protein, Super Green, Forever Beautiful, Chocolate Lover, Energy Bomb, Power Matcha, and Muscle Power—each blend containing only plant-derived powdered ingredients.
Coming to the United States
Your Super’s first three years of business focused on the European market, but despite not actively advertising to US consumers, they still got orders from across the pond.
“This was in the beginning of 2017…people in the US saw us on social media and they were willing to wait for four weeks of shipping just to get our product,” Kuech said.
Selling directly to consumers exclusively online on its website and through Amazon, the company now has around 20,000 customers, a revenue in the seven digits, and continual growth month-to-month, he added. The staff has grown from just a two-person show to a team of 12 people.
The duo is now focusing on increasing sales and marketing in the US, particularly through social media and online advertising.
Highlighting functions over ingredients
Part of the product line’s draw, according to De Groot, is its functional positioning. It was a conscious decision from the brand’s part to highlight different health benefits over the ingredients that go into each blend.
“Our goal is to make healthy food easy and convenient,” Kuech said. Europeans may not be familiar with matcha or moringa, so “to target a broader group of people, we named them with the functionality of the products,” he added. “The functional names speak to the consumers right away.”
Sourcing is another big component of the company. Partnering with growers and distributors worldwide, the company chooses single-origin powders and lists the country of origin next to the ingredient name. The Energy Bomb blend, for example, has acai and guarana from Brazil, maca and lucuma from Peru, and banana from Ecuador.
“We naturally made a conscious decision of who we want to be. We want to be a brand with a very premium product, so sourcing is a big thing. We want to source from smaller suppliers and directly [from farmers] as best we can, the bigger we get the more we will be able to do that,” De Groot said.