Interested in starting your own entrepreneurial journey in food and beverage but unsure what to expect? Then read up on our interview with Arthur Schiller, co-founder and CEO of BY2048, located in Montreal, QC, Canada.
What's your business, and who are your customers?
BY2048 makes plant-based seafood alternatives with the mission of saving our oceans. Our first product is a smoked-salmon alternative made from organic carrots! Unlike traditional smoked salmon, our product is free of mercury, arsenic, microplastics, PCBs, and the many other contaminants hurting our oceans.
In North America, several species of salmon are already classified as endangered. That is why we offer an alternative way to enjoy the same taste and texture but in a more sustainable way.
Our products are for all ocean lovers! While our plant-based smoked salmon is great for vegans, people with seafood allergies, and those who are pregnant, our mission is to encourage everyone to moderate their seafood consumption with plant-based alternatives to give our oceans a chance to heal.
Tell us about yourself
I have always loved seafood, but a few years ago, I read a study that predicted that our oceans could run out of fish by the year 2048 if we don’t make significant changes. A recent audit of Canadian fisheries found that only about ⅓ could be classified as healthy. This mission is at the core of BY2048 and what motivates me daily.
What's your biggest accomplishment as a business owner?
It’s the positive impact BY2048 is having on our planet. Because we pledged to donate 5% of profits to organizations working towards ocean conservation, we decided to offset 2x of the weight of our packaging in ocean-bound plastic. In just the last few months since launching in supermarkets, we have already offset over 500kg of plastic, equivalent to over 1,000,000 plastic straws. The most rewarding part of running BY2048 is knowing that we have a net positive impact on our world.
What's one of the hardest things that come with being a business owner?
Right now, it’s Imposter Syndrome! Who am I to even give you business advice? As my business grows - more and more people look to me like I know what I’m talking about. I don’t. I’ve made all the mistakes you could make, but I guess the key is to keep learning and growing and try not to make the same mistakes.
What are the top tips you'd give to anyone looking to start, run and grow a business today?
- Fail quickly and cheaply - when you are first starting, don’t mistake investing your life savings before you even know if you have a business. There are many creative ways to test your idea without spending a lot of money. There is a big difference between people telling you that you have a great idea and them actually paying for your goods or services. We started at farmers' markets using labels we designed and printed ourselves. Make your big mistakes early and learn from them.
- You don’t have to say yes to every opportunity - it can be difficult sometimes when there is a lucrative opportunity that comes your way to say no. Take a beat, think long term, and make sure this is actually in line with your goals.
- If you can do anything else - do it! Being an entrepreneur is tough, and it comes with many ups and downs, wins and losses. Make sure this is something for which you are willing to struggle.
Is there anything else you'd like to share?
As part of our mission of plastic-free oceans, we are also offsetting an additional ounce of plastic for every Instagram follower, so make sure to follow us at @by2048_.
Where can people find you and your business?
If you like what you've read here and have your own story as a solopreneur that you'd like to share, then email firstname.lastname@example.org; we'd love to feature your journey on these pages.
Feel inspired to start, run or grow your own subscription business? Check out subkit.com and learn how you can turn "one day" into day one.