Innovation Skåne

A refreshingly brave attitude behind the success of Färsking

2019-02-26 | Business Advisory Services

Could a granola brand inspire a new movement of healthy living habits among kids? Further, could a small Swedish startup become that brand and take a position among established giants in the food industry? Well, if someone can, it would be Färsking.

First year of learning by doing

The company Färsking started out in Helsingborg as a school project, with the simple idea to make healthy cereal more appealing to kids. With their sugar free granola in colourful packages, dressed in superhero suits, Amanda Larsson and Calle Rosengren performed a tour in local stores to offer tastings and samples. The young entrepreneurs were early on in the project in contact with Innovation Skånes business advisors Thomas Torounidis and Mikaela Färnqvist.

– Thanks to the great sales and pitch training we got from the business advisors at Innovation Skåne, we felt more secure. This really helped us in our presentations and meetings!

Although their first brand Knasters Granola made it to the shelves of ten local stores, the team had soon identified some areas in need of improvement.

– We discovered kids today are not as into heroes as we imagined. Ten year-olds watch Youtube and have other role models now, which in a sense makes them more mature when it comes to their preferences, Amanda explains.

This led to Färsking starting the process of rebranding in the beginning of 2017. The new brand should still appeal to kids, however with a cooler design relevant to a modern generation. During this process, the team also caught the interest of a few larger customers and investors.

Being the new kids on the block in a traditional industry

Long story short, in the late summer of 2018 Ananda and Calle launched their granola brand with the new name Färsking in 480 stores in Sweden. Crowdfunding was part of the quick success, says Amanda. She also believes it was strategically important to allow many owners in to the startup, to boost the community and create a movement.

– For me, this has always been bigger than the granola itself, and we share that vision with our partners and owners. We are so grateful for the support we now have with a team of 25 active partners.

The new name Färsking is a reference both to themselves as young entrepreneurs as well as their target audience: the kids.

– This is a position we have grown to embrace and live by. We are naive in a sense, the new kids on the block, and we have this attitude of ”how hard can it be”. We have to! Should we have known the answer to that question (which is, “very hard indeed”), we probably wouldn’t have tried in the first place. But we tried, and things eventually worked out. We have a firm belief in ourselves as well as our product and vision, which makes it easier to battle any obstacles.

The future of food in general and färsking in particular

Amanda says the name Färsking was chosen also with a future international launch in mind. Hopefully, Denmark and Norway are within reach in a few years. The company is currently working on new products and food innovations, along with market activities and sales.

As for the general knowledge, trends and preferences in food, Amanda shares a few observations and thoughts;

– I believe teens and kids today are more aware and will continue to be. They are influenced by social media profiles rather than kids shows on tv. Our generation has this urge to protect the future and we look for honest and sustainable brands. I also believe we are only on the verge of a new era of ”brain food”, connecting aspects such as mental health and school results to what we eat. My hopes are Färsking will continue to develop around these questions and become a thought leader on what great food can be.