It’s been proven time and time again that consuming food away from home on a consistent basis leads to obesity and has been linked to a higher risk of metabolic disorders such as diabetes. In fact, a Health Report from Statistics Canada found that about one in five Canadians had consumed food away from home the previous day which inclined them to eat fewer whole fruits, vegetables, whole grains, and healthy fat. As a consequence, when we devour foods with empty calories on a regular basis, it can expedite numerous negative health effects.
According to South Gate Medical, these health effects include headaches and migraines, increased risk of depression, rises in LDL cholesterol levels, increases in blood sugar and insulin resistance, and much more.
Knowing this, why do we still turn to fast food as an option? Quite simply, fast food is quick, typically cost-efficient, available all the time, and easy to access. To trek a few city blocks and not come across a McDonald’s, Burger King, Dairy Queen, or other fast food joint would be considered a miracle. As humans, we’re always seeking convenience!
But what if healthy food options also came at a convenience?
We sat down with Katie Murray and Brady Kosior, the founders of the Kelowna-based food & tech startup, Cruze Co. Cruze Co. is giving customers an everyday excuse to eat fresh food fast. Using the advanced technology in their Fresh Smart fridges, Cruze Co. offers delicious, fresh, and easy-to-access food 24/7 across various locations in Kelowna, British Columbia such as the city’s largest mall and the YLW airport.
Making Fast Food Healthy
Cruze Co. was born from Katie’s frustration of working a late-night radio job where her shift would typically end at around midnight. Katie would constantly be met with roadblocks when trying to find a quick meal.
“At that time there’s simply nothing good to eat! Take-away? Not open! Supermarket salad? Too soggy! Restaurants? Take forever!”
Thus, the pair got to talking about how they could create alternate food solutions, and from this, the concept of Fresh Smart fridges that are available 24/7 was created.
“Our mission is simple: To provide a world-class food experience for every demographic. Saving our customers time in their everyday life by providing an experience in under 60 seconds.”
Standing Out From Fast Food Chains
With convenience and health at its core, Cruze Co. grabs customers’ attention through their aesthetically branded, and innovative fridges. In addition to their fridges, Cruze Co. has further discovered that customers are searching for alternative food solutions on their own.
“We found that the food sells itself. Developed by our team of chefs, our salads, bowls, sandwiches, treats, and breakfast items taste as fresh as anything you would make at home. What makes what we’re doing interesting is that it’s delicious food, but it’s being delivered in an innovative manner. Depending on where consumers are located, our Cruze Fridges allow them to purchase items 24 hours a day, seven days a week.”
Maintaining the Promise of Healthy, Fresh Food
Maintaining healthy and fresh food is definitely a strenuous task. We asked Katie and Brady to share how they keep up with demand and moreover ensure their food is of the utmost quality.
“It is our core mission to make sure that we are providing customers with delicious, delectable items that are also fresh. We restock our fridges every day and 90% of our items are made in-house and with local ingredients when available. You can find salads (strawberry walnut salad, apple walnut, Thai Chicken), bowls (pesto pasta bowl, falafel bowl), treats (our famous banana bread, peanut butter oat bar, cheesecake cups), fresh-pressed juice (from stoke juice), and our most popular item, our sandwiches. We’ve invested a lot of time into making this possible with every menu item since we know how much our customers appreciate it.”
And on the side of quality control:
“Fresh food can be difficult to manage due to its short shelf-life. Each Cruze Fridge’s inventory is tracked in real-time by the technology that powers them. We can learn what items are popular on an individual fridge and provide what customers want. All of this plays into keeping the spoilage to a minimum. If we have to take out any food, it is immediately dropped off at a community fridge in downtown Kelowna so nothing is wasted, only enjoyed.”
Helping Local Businesses Grow
Based in Kelowna, B.C., Cruze Co. has additionally directed its attention to lifting up other local businesses to boost the growth of other food and hospitality brands in the city. The company aims to collaborate with as many local food companies with similar values and missions as possible. Both Katie and Brady believe “there is room for everyone to succeed on this planet,” and Cruze Co. has given the duo an opportunity to build up other brands as they develop their own.
However, Katie and Brady don’t plan on stopping here, not only do they see Cruze Co. expanding into hundreds of locations across Kelowna and all of B.C., but also nation-wide.
“Cruze Co. is providing positive food experiences for every demographic. From the first bite until the very last bite, we strive to create every item with pure love…the full Cruze Co. experience. Our goal is to continue expanding our locations to reach new regions with healthy, accessible food.”
If you’re interested in learning more about Cruze Co. you can head over to their Instagram or Facebook. If you’re interested in installing a Cruze Co. Fresh Smart fridge in your workspace or commercial building, reach out to the team at firstname.lastname@example.org.