Subkit Solopreneur Feature
Our Cofounder, Deanna, was featured in the Go Solo online magazine. Go Solo highlights entrepreneurs and start-ups. Read on to find out more about Deanna and ONANA!
Gluten-free Tortillas - ONANA Foods
Interested in starting your own entrepreneurial journey in food and beverage but unsure what to expect? Then read up on our interview with Deanna McCraw, co-founder and CEO of ONANA Foods, located in Fort Collins, CO, USA.
What's your business, and who are your customers?
At ONANA, we don't just settle for gluten-free. We make products that are allergy-friendly AND nutrient-dense. But above all that, we make delicious tortillas that the whole family will love! Our customers have food allergies or who are conscientious about the ingredients and food that they put into their bodies. They value their health without compromising taste!
Tell us about yourself
I transitioned to a gluten-free, plant-based diet in college because it made me feel my best. While grocery shopping, I noticed that a lot of gluten-free and other "healthy" food options didn't seem that healthy to me. What could be healthy about eating a product with 30-50 ingredients?? And just because it's "natural" doesn't mean I want to eat cane sugar. As an adult, I found myself standing in the middle of the grocery aisle yet again inspecting health food labels and realizing there was a disconnect between what I deemed healthful and what the health food industry said qualified. Sure, I want my gluten-free food to taste like its gluten-filled originals, but not if it means compromising my health and digestion.
My Mom and I were always on the hunt for alternative grain products and recipes. Cut to spending the majority of 2017 in my kitchen recipe testing with green plantains. After a year and a half of trial and error, my initial concept for a plantain-based flatbread had morphed into a tortilla made with a few ingredients, easy methods, and a delicious outcome. I was eager to share these tortillas with family and friends that have expressed their longing for gluten-free products that had better for you and less ingredients, all while still tasting great! Receiving feedback from customers about how they are so excited to find an allergy-friendly tortilla that actually tastes good (and stays together) is what keeps us motivated every day!
What's your biggest accomplishment as a business owner?
I believe that taking the plunge to start my own business will always be my biggest accomplishment. It's nerve-wracking to go out on a limb and not know what the outcome will be, so having that courage and support from family and friends helped me accomplish this goal.
What's one of the hardest things that come with being a business owner?
The hardest thing will always be work/life balance. When the success of your business is all on you, it is tempting to want to work 24/7. But I found after my first year that this led to some extreme symptoms of burnout. Now that I am a few years into entrepreneurship, it's a little easier to know when to clock out for the evening.
What are the top tips you'd give to anyone looking to start, run and grow a business today?
- The first year will be the hardest, so be prepared mentally and physically.
- Have a solid idea and mechanism for scaling your business. Scaling will always be the most challenging.
- Believe in your product 100%, but also be willing to take feedback and advice from those who have been in the business longer than you.
There is room for everyone and every product in this world, so be generous with your time and energy to help others get where you and your business are!
Where can people find you and your business?
Read the full feature or learn more about Go Solo here