She has ridden horses for her country, been a personal trainer and now Jodie McGregor has launched her own business, creating healthy breakfast boxes for the time poor.
“While I was a PT I became really interested in nutrition and so decided to do a three year degree in it at Teesside University,” explains the 25-year-old from Bedale.
“While I was studying I became really interested in the food industry and started making my own low sugar granola that I sold in farmshops and zero waste stores.”
Jodie launched Perfect Provender last year, following her own plastic- free ethos,
But the more she looked into the market more, she saw there was a gap for something else.
“As a personal trainer I realised how hard it was for some people to get a quick nutritious breakfast and I really wanted to move my business online.”
And so she came up with the idea of My Breakfast Box – a subscription service from £7.50 a week which sees healthy breakfasts including granola, muesli, a selection of porridges and breakfast bars delivered straight to your door.
“I read a book called Subscription which said increasingly more and more aspects of our life would become subscription.
“We had been due to launch at the end of March this year but then coronavirus hit,” says Jodie.
“But then we decided that we would go ahead with it any way. In some ways the timing was good as so many people were shopping online.”
She has a good local following and the word is spreading.
Jodie is passionate about her green credentials.
“We are also extremely passionate about being as green as possible which is why we have a strict ‘pass on plastic’ ethos. All of our packaging is home compostable and plastic free.”
They will soon be introducing packaging that is recyclable with household paper waste.
But life could have been very different for Jodie who, as a teenager, was competing for Team GB in eventing.
She grew up on a farm in Bishopdale and horses were her life.
At the height of her equestrian career she was competing on 10 horses owned by different people.
But she realised that she didn’t quite have what it takes to get to the very top.
“There are so many people on the circuit who have been doing it for 20, 30 and even 40 years and never quite make it, I didn’t want to be that person. I do miss competing but I still ride.”
At 21 she set up her first business, Jodie’s Fit Formula after qualifying in sports science followed by a personal training course.
Her business saw her going into people’s homes and running PT sessions and hotels in North Yorkshire.
It was during this time that she started to become increasingly interested in food and nutrition, even writing her own cookery book.
Gradually this side of things started to take precedence and she decided to change direction.
In many ways it was lucky as the personal side of her business would have dried up due to the current lockdown.
Instead she rents a unit close to where she now lives in Bedale and employs two part-time staff to help her with her fledging business. Everything is produced there other than the breakfast bars.
“We are constantly working on new products so that our customers can expect exciting additions to the range all the time,” says Jodie.
“We currently have 20 products to choose from and recently added a blackcurrant porridge blend (which works really well as overnight oats too) and a rhubarb and golden berry muesli to celebrate rhubarb season. Porridge is proving really popular at the moment. I think it is because of the high fibre content.”
She also has a tasting club which allows members to sample new products before she launches them.
“It’s totally free and is our way of getting feedback on the new products so we can make them as delicious as possible.
“We want to help people all over the country, and eventually world, to eat a better breakfast.
“There should never be a sacrifice on flavour and quality when it comes to fuelling your body and our products show just how fun and exciting healthy eating can be.”
Jodie also wants to make it as easy as possible for people to access her service and is developing an app to let people manage their boxes.
“You can currently customise your box on our website but we want to make it even easier. Using technology to create a fantastic platform for our products and services means we can change the way we think about breakfast in line with how fast paced and busy our lives are.
“You can choose what you want in your box or we can send a surprise, all via Royal Mail, and that is proving really popular at the moment. I think people like a surprise.”
The website also includes a blog, recipes, podcast and even yoga sessions.
“We know our customers have busy lives and we want to make it as easy as possible for them to have a healthy, nutritious life.”
She is also working on introducing a family breakfast box to complement her range,