Let’s face it. With so much to do and so little time, we can barely plan our day hassle-free, and when it comes to the choices of food we put into our body, do you think we have the time to prepare our meals that fits our needs without making any compromises with our health? For most of us, the answer is a resounding “No!”.
The saviour, Fit Box, provides you with meal boxes on a subscription basis that is customized to your needs, and lets you know the exact amount of calories, carbohydrates, protein, and fats you’re putting into your body. Thus it gives you complete control over your food habits. We interviewed CEO/Founder Denim Shrestha to know more about this fascinating concept.
What was the main motive behind establishing Fit Box?
Well, it all started after I finished my A-levels. Unlike most of my friends, I wanted to stay in Nepal and do something here. Back then I was into fitness and the common problem we faced within our fitness circle was not being able to make healthy and smart choices with regards to our diet. After a few years of brainstorming, I came up with the idea of providing customized meal boxes for people who prioritized health, and thus the idea of Fit Box was born.
What is so special about your business? What sets you apart?
The trend of hygienic foods has recently swept the food market but the practice of using traditional but unhealthy ingredients still exists. For example, a traditional Puri-Tarkari might be hygienic but it is not healthy as per unhealthy traditional ingredients used. However, there is a difference between just being ‘hygienic’ and being ‘hygienic and healthy’, and that’s where we stand out. What we provide is far from the food prepared with same old ingredients. We use alternative healthy ingredients like olive oil, brown rice, and whole-wheat spaghetti/pasta.
When you started, there were almost no meal prep companies and people were unaware of the concept. How far has it changed in the past 2 years?
There were almost no companies like us when we started. So I thought it would be difficult for us to settle into the market but fortunately, due to the rising trend of health and fitness awareness, we made quite an unexpected growth in the first couple of months itself. After 2 years we have been able to make quite a substantial growth as the health and fitness industry has been growing tremendously.
The pandemic has hit many businesses severely. How is your company coping up?
The only thing that came in our mind was to stay quiet and wait for the lockdown to end as we couldn’t risk the health of our employees and our customers. If we had opened up during the lockdown, it could have influenced other companies to do the same, and that could have led to a rise in Covid-19 cases. We have only recently opened after the lockdown ended completely, but many customers are still concerned about the safety measure. So some aren’t ordering any meals whereas some were willing to order food even during the lockdown.
Is Fit Box just for fitness enthusiasts or do you see people barely having any concerns about the fitness industry consuming your product?
You would be surprised to know that only about 30% of our customers are gym-goers or fitness enthusiasts. The majority of people are regular people who don’t have the time to hit the gym and want to stay healthy by maintaining a good diet. We also serve a few corporate houses as a whole for their lunch. So, the customers we cater to aren’t only the gym bros who oil up and flex in front of thousands of people in bodybuilding competitions. We welcome anyone desiring to focus on making healthy food choices.
What do you think the future holds for Fit Box? In what aspect do you see it growing?
We went from only delivering inside Lalitpur to expanding into Kathmandu. Now we want to start delivering to Bhaktapur and to Kathmandu valley as a whole. The way we have thought of expanding is with an idea of a satellite kitchen with the main chef at the head kitchen half cooking foods and sending to different branches of the kitchen all around the valley by which we can produce more without compromising consistency and accuracy as the head chef prepares all the meals. We also want to experiment with delivering healthy alternatives to junk food by replacing the unhealthy ingredients by which you might be able to fulfill your cravings without any guilt.
What would be your final words to our readers?
I don’t have any life-changing words to give you. The only thing that I would suggest is for everyone to stop fantasizing about foreign lands, or be blinded by their luxuries. Stay right here in Nepal and do something. Since it is a nascent market, there are things you can do here that are beyond your imagination.