Dishidrop’s owners Nic and Renee Long share how ‘priceless’ support from Launchpad has helped them create an environmentally friendly ‘lockdown-resistant takeaway enterprise’

Tell us about your company?

In November 2019, we opened Dishi Vegan Asian Kitchen, with 100 per cent plant-based food provided in a special, top service environment.

Quickly, customers requested takeaway, but we resisted due to the heavy environmental impact of packaging and food waste. When lockdown came, we didn’t have a choice, as we were a fledgling business. By July we knew we had to develop a way to ditch the plastic and create a lockdown-resistant takeaway enterprise. We created Dishidrop in October as a plant-based, plastic-free subscription service.

Customers sign up to monthly or fortnightly deliveries with meals in stainless-steel containers. The predetermined menu changes fortnightly. Food waste is zero, deliveries are efficient and in two months, our customers have saved almost 3,000 plastic containers.

We will be swapping our old diesel car for a fully-electric vehicle to deliver powered by 100 per cent green renewable solar energy.

 

When did you first decide to start up on your own and what inspired you?

In April 2019 after visiting a vegan cafe in the Midlands. It has always been on our mind as Nic is proficient in the kitchen and I know a thing or two about customer service. We were both getting fed-up with our jobs, so instead of retraining or finding another company to work for, we decided to set up something we could feel good about doing every day.

 

How has Launchpad helped you?

The support has been priceless, it made us feel this plunge was not so scary. We gained immense knowledge, all helping develop our confidence. There were so many resources and very dedicated staff – we feel very lucky to be a Sheffield business owner.

 

What are your hopes and aims for the business?

To grow Dishidrop from our initial 100 subscribers in our first month to 200 by December – only 45 more to go! The more people we feed, the more carbon, food waste and plastic is saved, which gives us the motivation to improve and provide unparalleled customer service.

 

Launchpad business start-up advisor Natalie Fletcher said:

“Nic and Renee are a dream team. No doubt, like most businesses in the hospitality sector, this year will have been a challenge, but they have been quick to adapt and diversify their businesses model which is key in the current climate.

“Their passion for food combined with the way in which they have re-organised their services to meet delivery demands truly demonstrates that they are determined to keep pushing their business forward despite the uncertain time.

“We’re so pleased to see Dishidrop offering delivery services across the city.

“Starting and growing a business is not easy and that’s why the Launchpad programme was created.  Part funded by the European Regional Development Fund and our partners means there is no cost to the entrepreneur, so we can get straight to work on turning those dreams into reality.

“Stop dreaming and do it. Contact us for information now on 03330 00 00 39 or email growthhub@sheffieldcityregion.org.uk.”