As one of seven co-founders of snack empire Graze, Ben Jones has been instrumental in transforming the eating habits of thousands of foodies across the United Kingdom. Indeed, the choice of name can explain much of the company’s success: green grass, fresh produce and healthy food have created an image around Graze which has prompted growing numbers of snackers in the UK and the US to sign up to the firm’s customer list.
The concept behind Glaze – hand-picked, nutritionally balanced snack boxes delivered in the post – was originally met with derision by investors, who questioned the logistics of the business. Before establishing the company, Jones and two of his co-founders at Graze set up a design consultancy that specialised in industrial design, brand communications and digital media, before abandoning the business to focus on their postal-snack dreams. Launched in January 2009, Jones and friends were inspired by the constant temptation that faces us all: snacks at work. After months of dodging donuts and digestives, the young entrepreneurs decided on the need for a snack that didn’t bring with it a degree of guilt.
The idea behind the snack boxes was born after a lot of experimentation with the Royal Mail – and lots of laughs to boot. Years later, Jones built the Graze kitchen along with its immensely successful website, Graze.com. Indeed, the decision to abandon other ventures and quit other jobs appears to have worked out for the team at Graze: the company launched stateside in 2013, going on to sell products to over 55,000 customers across 48 states, with a partnership with FedEx and USPS delivery. In the space of half a decade, Graze has grown into a firm which turns over well in excess of £40 million each year.