Interested in starting your own entrepreneurial journey in health and supplements but unsure what to expect? Then read up on our interview with Corinna Bellizzi, Head of Sales & Marketing of Orlo Nutrition, located in Wilmington, DE, USA.
What's your business, and who are your customers?
Orlo Nutrition creates regenerative nutrition solutions from sustainable algae with future-forward integration of AI technology and superior absorption. Our aim is to create more from less, using 99% less land and water resources than other nutrition sources. The first products we released focused on providing omega-3s in their most active polar lipid form (including EPA and DHA).
We will soon offer more products for generalized nutrition that harness the full potential of microalgae as we seek to solve major nutrition deficiencies in vegans, vegetarians, and those that consume a standard Western diet. Vitamin B12, proteins, and omega-3s are all nutrients that most people don't get enough of - so these are our primary areas of focus at the present time.
Our customers range in age from 6 to 106, though most are men and women 30+ who trend "flexitarian" or who are concerned with the future health of themselves, their families, and planet Earth.
Tell us about yourself
I spent my first 3 years post-college working in nutritional ingredient sales, supporting the formulation of hundreds of products. I was particularly intrigued by the many health benefits of the omega-3s EPA and DHA, so when in 2002, the FDA authorized a qualified health claim for omega-3s and cardiovascular health, I jumped right in with both feet. I've been working in the omega-3 category ever since.
Since 2002, thousands of research studies have extolled the virtues of EPA and DHA for many health functions far beyond heart health. The reason these essential omega-3s are so critical to different health functions is simple. Every cell in our bodies relies on the omega-3s EPA and DHA to function optimally. While supplementation offers one solution to the global omega-3 insufficiency, there wouldn't be enough fish in the sea if we were all to consume fish oil. Thankfully, with advents in growing conditions and new methods of refinement, we can cut out the middle fish and go straight to the original source of both EPA and DHA - microalgae!
I continue to remain inspired to educate the marketplace while creating more nutrition solutions for people of all ages so that I can be part of the solution that ends our global omega-3 deficiency. I'm thrilled that the work I do provides active omega-3s in the polar lipid form - because they are better absorbed by all people, and they're better for the planet.
What's your biggest accomplishment as a business owner?
I think my biggest accomplishment to date is providing a sustainable omega-3 solution that showcases the power of algae to provide a circular solution to human health challenges. We can grow algae exponentially without pesticides or herbicides. We can extract it without the use of harsh chemicals. We can create packaging that is mindful of resources, made from recycled and reusable materials. And we can even print our boxes with algae-based inks. This product isn't just cradle to grave; it's cradle to cradle!
What's one of the hardest things that comes with being a business owner?
I find that the hardest thing about entrepreneurship is making time for myself on any given day. I'll let my workaholic tendencies push me into overdrive time and time again. I find that taking a moment every hour to do a simple breathing exercise and giving myself one afternoon a week to do something I love for a few hours does wonders for my well-being. Don't forget to make time for yourself every week, even if you have to put it on your calendar.
What are the top tips you'd give to anyone looking to start, run and grow a business today?
- Begin with the end in mind. This is critical to building your business plan. Envision where you want to end up and align everything behind that vision. Make sure that all of your objectives are clearly spelled out with waypoints to check progress. While you have begun with the end in mind, don't be afraid to course correct if something doesn't feel right. Just make sure it aligns with your long-term mission and resonates with your core values.
- Remember to ask for help from your community to harness the full power of your network. They can be valuable assets that provide a free or low-cost sounding board as you work to grow your business. People around you want you to succeed. Asking for the opinion of people you respect also invests them in your success. Check back in with them from time to time to let them know how you're doing and how valuable their perspective was to your plans. You may not implement all of their ideas, but you will have shown them appreciation just by keeping them in the loop. Because they feel appreciated, they will also be more likely to help if you need or want their support again.
- Focus on execution. You may not be able to make giant strides every day, but be sure you are focused on executing tasks that align with your goals. When everything lines up, you will be more assured that you reach your objectives.
Where can people find you and your business?
If you like what you've read here and have your own story as a solo or small business entrepreneur that you'd like to share, then please answer these interview questions. We'd love to feature your journey on these pages.
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