Q&A: Lenka Porubska, Founder of MMMORE Raw Treats
This month at GoodnessMe, we're all about conscious living. What do we mean by that? Well, to start, we believe that every time we buy food, we are making a choice about who we support and how we treat our bodies. What we eat matters and not just for our own health, but for the health of the environment!
Here, we chat to Lenka Porubska, founder of MMMORE Raw Treats (which you'll find in the October Conscious Box) about what inspired her to start her business, the sustainably practices she's most proud of, how she personally aims to lead an eco-friendly life and mmmore (sorry, it had to be done!).
What was the inspiration behind starting MMMORE? Have you always had a passion for wholefoods?
I think our bodies always know, deep down, what’s good for them. For me it was simply a matter of tuning in. About six years ago, I felt called to lead a ‘healthier lifestyle’ and define what that meant for myself.
I started by asking my body, “Hey, what would make you feel good?”, and the answer came loud and clear: movement! Once I began exercising, I naturally wanted to be nourished with the right foods; the right fuel. I began studying nutrition and devouring information about healthy ingredients, food labels, what the human body needs to thrive.
Like many people, I literally cooked (or uncooked) my way to better health, playing around with all manner of wholefood combinations and nourishing recipes to satisfy stomach and soul. I realised that working creatively with food and flavour was my passion; that dreaming up and sharing deliciously healthy treats with more and more people was what I wanted to do. And the rest is history!
Tell us about your compostable packaging. Why is this important to you?
My personal values have been woven into MMMORE from the start. The question “What’s good for people and planet?” serves as my decision-making compass - not just, “What makes more money with less effort?”. This has been businesses 101 for too long, but it’s time to think bigger. It’s time to give back to our environment.
When it came to choosing MMMORE’s packaging, I knew that plastic simply wouldn’t cut it. (After all, how could we proudly offer healthy products with unhealthy implications for the environment?) So we invested in home compostable packaging; an amazing natural product that ends up as food for other microorganisms living in soil or water. It breaks down easily (no heavy duty composting required!) and actively nourishes the earth, starting in people’s backyard compost piles.
I’m hoping that more businesses start talking about this packaging, clamouring for it, creating demand and making it more affordable for everyone. At heart, choosing compostable packaging is an expression of my belief that small business owners have a tremendous power to change the world for the better. We are the creators, the ones who communicate with our customers, the ones who can show the world that business can be done differently and that little things matter. We are here to educate our communities. Change starts with us and others will follow; it’s a culture shift. I believe that switching to compostable packaging should be on every company's agenda, large or small.
What other sustainable or conscious practices MMMORE is proud of?
MMMORE is proud to be producing very close to zero waste. Most of our ingredients arrive in recyclable materials; we order small quantities so the produce stays fresh and is never wasted by going out-of-date; we create no offcuts or wastage (the perks of doing everything by hand); we also consume a lot less energy by not cooking or baking our products. Wherever we can, we minimise our impact - even if it requires a little extra effort.
In what other ways do you personally live an eco-conscious life?
Like everyone, I’m on a lifelong path of learning, experimenting and trying to be a little bit better each day! I made the decision to stop eating meat to retract my support from unethical practices within the meat industry and champion planet-friendly methods of producing food. My body responds very well to a plant-based diet which is great. I reuse as much as I can in my home and life, say no to takeaway coffee cups and support other local eco-conscious companies - an easy-yet-powerful step towards a better future. Vote with your dollar!
What makes MMMORE different to other raw treats on the market?
We've always done things differently. Not because we’re trying to be different, but because we simply have our own ways of doing things. For example, I don’t think that pre-prepared ingredients taste as good as those we craft ourselves (like freeze dried berries or small-batch roasted peanuts). We pay attention to the details and I like to think you can taste it! I’ve always been driven by high expectations about what a raw treat can be. Not just ‘something that tastes healthy/fibrous’ but a surprisingly indulgent experience. I love the challenge of working with simple wholefoods; creating incredible flavours, textures, and richness with a very short ingredient list. It’s like alchemy!
When it comes to sugar and satisfying those sweet cravings, what is one thing you wish more people knew?
I can only speak from my own experience, but one thing I've learned is that if you deprive yourself completely of sugar and foods you love and crave, it can be counter productive. Sugar in very small doses (the ‘good’ natural kind if possible) is not going to ruin all your excellent temple-nourishing work! Since I stopped dieting a few years ago (it used to be the story of my life *sigh*), I've developed a healthy relationship with food beyond my wildest dreams. Of course, I’ll always look out for what goes into my body and stay away from processed food as much as I can, but I also allow myself a little indulgence without beating myself up about it. It’s pure liberation. Everybody is different, but once you find what works for you, stick with it and stop listening to the latest fads that promise to change your body to fit a certain image. You’re awesome as is.
What does your typical day on a plate look like?
I normally don't eat breakfast. My body never craves food in the morning and I choose to listen. However, I’m a big fan of breakfast food so I often end up having brekkie for lunch. I’m more of a savoury gal so it’s often avo on toast with veggies or eggs. I love a good veggie sandwich too - sourdough bread is my weakness. I also have a new obsession thanks to our latest range - peanut butter - so that’s been my go-to snack for months (filed under ‘research’). I love fruit and have at least one piece every day. Is there a more perfect snack? Early dinners at around 6ish work for me to avoid going to bed on a full stomach. The dinner usually is light, featuring a tasty salad made from fresh veggies, a nice soup in winter, or when I’m feeling the urge for Italian, I go out and treat myself to pizza or pasta. Mmmm.
You've just launched a range of peanut butter! What's next for MMMORE and what are you most excited about?
The PB excitement hasn’t left the building. We’re still celebrating the birth of our newest flavour babies! Developing this range of PB has been an amazing journey because it’s so utterly different from what we usually do, and was a leap of faith in many respects.
Covid thwacked my business, but I decided to take advantage of the ‘downtime' and get creative. As a result, I don't think I've ever been as busy as in the last few months. Now that our PBs are officially out there in the world being slathered on people’s toast/eaten by the spoonful, I’m tinkering around with some new secret projects - because I’ve finally accepted that for me, happiness is creating! I’ll never stop.