Interested in starting your own entrepreneurial journey in agriculture but unsure what to expect? Then read up on our interview with Kalie Wang, Founder of Urban Grow Farms, located in Sydney, NS, Canada.
What's your business, and who are your customers?
I grow microgreens and fresh gourmet mushrooms indoors all year round. My customers are restaurant chefs, independent grocery stores, and farmers' markets/Foodhub customers.
Tell us about yourself
I started this business in October 2019. I was a hobby gardener and wanted to extend the growing season. I found out about growing microgreens and gave it a try. I then gave the products to friends to try; they liked them. I tried to sell to restaurants; they also liked them. That's how I knew there was a market for it. I started trying wide different varieties, and there were challenges, but what motivated me to keep going was my happy clients.
What's your biggest accomplishment as a business owner?
As an immigrant women's business owner, I am so proud to have created this business and to be recognized by the community. My biggest accomplishment so far in this business is supporting two of my families from Ukraine. They came to Canada in march after the war started and have been employed by the business ever since. I am so happy to be able to provide financial support to restart their life in Canada.
What's one of the hardest things that comes with being a business owner?
As a small business owner, you are everything. HR, Finance, Accountant, Labor, Marketer. You may require to work early morning, late night, weekends, and holidays. Sometimes, it feels very hard to keep a balanced life when running a business.
What are the top tips you'd give to anyone looking to start, run and grow a business today?
- To start a business, you must do market research and make sure there is a need or demand in the market.
- To run a business, be prepared that things can get overwhelming; you need to know every aspect of your business.
- Growing a business can be stressful. Take care of yourself before taking care of the growth. You can't do it all, so ensure you care for yourself, and success will flow.
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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