‘Nasty’ find behind million-dollar Coles deal
Jordyn Evans had no idea that reading a label would result in a million-dollar business idea.
But earlier this year, the Melbourne woman signed a deal with supermarket giant Coles, which rolled out the pantry item she created in multiple stores, catapulting her to success.
And it all came from a moment of frustration while cooking.
"This particular Sunday while I was meal prepping, I started reading the ingredients on the labels of the seasonings that I had in my pantry," Jordyn told news.com.au.
"Much to my surprise, I realised the mass-market seasonings I used contained a whole lot of nasty ingredients. Sugars, high amounts of salt, emulsifiers, preservatives, numbers and ingredients I couldn't pronounce.
"I no longer felt confident consuming these products and that prompted an idea."
The 28-year-old decided to create a healthy and all-natural food seasoning that she wanted consumers to "feel confident consuming". She named the business Mingle Seasoning.
"I was fed up with the mass-market offerings that were full of nasties. I loved a seasoning because of its convenience," she said. "There's nothing better than simply shaking a seasoning on your protein or vegetable and getting that instant bold punch of flavour."
Over the next months Jordyn created some simple "go-to" flavourings like all-purpose, garlic and herb and Moroccan. She also concocted a few unique flavours including smoky, spicy Mexican and her personal favourite, garlic and dill.
"There was a lot of trial and error and it really looked like a scene from Breaking Bad, with our masks on, blending up spices in my kitchen, day in day out, until we got the family's and friends' tick of approval," Jordyn admits, explaining the spices are sourced from a local family-run business and then blended and packed in Melbourne.
After giving up everything, including her job as a marketing manager at CAPI Mineral Water, selling her car and even moving in with her parents, Jordyn said she hit a roadblock.
"I was an overworked business owner who wasn't making any time for family or downtime," she said. "I thought working harder, not smarter was the right approach."
After a home-cooked meal with her grandma, who sadly passed just weeks later, Jordyn decided to focus on making the core of Mingle Seasoning cooking with family - and the business suddenly gained momentum.
"Finally, making time to make dinner for my nan after six months and properly connecting with her before she passed away really was the wake-up I needed. After that, everything shifted for me with realigning my own values and Mingle's," she said.
"Mingle is out to reframe the dinnertime conversation and rather than see cooking as a chore, see its unforgotten value as an opportunity to connect.
"As a society, we are eating more takeaway than ever, we are more disconnected than ever and it's time to get back to the basics of cooking and connecting around a dinner table."
In October, Jordyn signed a mega deal with Coles to stock two Mingle products nationwide, Curry in a Hurry and Spag Bol Speedy Style, both of which cost $3.
The deal has been a "game changer" for Jordyn who said she could now "support an incredible team".
"I am incredibly grateful for Coles who have believed in my vision and championed a small supplier. They have been incredibly collaborative and supportive," she said.
Along with the Coles deal, Mingle is also stocked in hundreds of health food stores and independent retailers, with Jordyn revealing her revenue for 2019 is "above a million dollars".