In our latest ‘What’s Cooking’, we hear from Martine Ah Heng, founder and Pastry Chef of The Bakery Lab. Martine produces teff flour crackers that are sourced from local ingredients and they’re vegan.
Your business name: The Bakery Lab
How would you describe the business you are in?
At The Bakery Lab we produce handmade seeded teff flour crackers with Australian Grown ingredients. We wanted our crackers to be versatile, highly nutritious and a guilt free snack.
What do you love about your work?
I love that I have the opportunity to meet and talk to people at markets, to talk about the ingredients and why I chose to use teff flour. I love the smell of the crackers when baking.
What part of your job would you gladly give away?
I would gladly give away all admin works , anything that has to do with numbers and social media etc…
If you were starting out in business again today, what piece of advice would you give your younger you?
Be confident in yourself, trust that you will succeed and keep pushing. I would also surround myself with individuals that would help me grow and keep away from anything negative that would slow my progress.
Women start businesses 41% of the time to solve a problem. Sometimes this means we have a great vision but don’t have enough resources to sustain our business for the long term. Tell us what resources you started your business with eg. money saved, business premises, business partner, and how long before you started paying yourself?
I started my business with an idea and from my savings. I hired a mentor to help me in my business to get started, once my recipe was finalised I bought some ingredients and there I was selling at markets, I’m still learning the ins and outs of being in business.
As you know we are passionate about women #backingthemselves. So tell us about a time in the last twelve months that you’re really proud of.
I am proud of myself for taking that step into launching my crackers and start selling at farmers markets. It took me a lot of courage to go out there and believe in myself and in my products.
As we are always growing and learning, what is the one thing you would like to take time to learn more about?
I would like to learn more about finances and how to run my business efficiently.
The world is changing so fast and technology enables us to do so much more. We’re interested in which app you could not live without and why?
My banking apps as it helps me keep an eye on my expenses and make my payments on time.
Why did you decide to become a member of the Foodpreneurs Formula®
It all started when I attended an event by Females in Food in October 2017, Melbourne Mix and Mingle. I had an idea but I didn’t know from where to start. At this event I met some very inspirational Females in Food and Chelsea so I thought to myself that this could be the group I needed to belong to, it’s about business in food and it’s a females group.
We love to celebrate the successes. Can you give us an example of how joining the Foodpreneurs Formula™ has positively impacted your business?
Membership has helped me take my idea to the market. I learn a lot from others and I can ask questions and get answers. I should take more time to revisit the masterclasses and resources available for members. I am grateful to be part of the Foodpreneurs group coaching by Chelsea. I’m learning more on how to manage my small business effectively.
Thank you Martine.
Want to read more about another successful member? Check out our ‘What’s Cooking’ interview with maker, Sue Heward from Singing Magpie Produce.