Transforming snacking: Ember’s sustainable journey

In the first episode of the new look Bees’ Knees Comms-Cast, we explore the sustainable snacking sphere with Ember Snacks, illustrating the winning combination of natural ingredients and ethical business practices.

Harry Mayhew, co-founder and CEO of Ember, alongside Pinstone’s MD, Catherine Linch, , delves into the story of a brand that epitomises the essence of being ‘the bee’s knees’ in the realm of sustainable business.

A foundation in British agriculture

Ember’s inception was deeply rooted in the personal experiences and values of the Mayhew brothers, who grew up on a family farm in Suffolk.

“We always knew we’d probably do something together, and always knew we would do something in food,” Harry Meyhew recounts, highlighting the foundational role of their upbringing in shaping Ember’s mission.

The brand’s commitment to providing “natural nutrition in a snacking format” was born out of a desire to address the scarcity of natural, less processed food options in the snack industry.

Distinguishing itself through a steadfast refusal to add sugars or sweeteners, Ember has carved a niche in the market with its high-quality meat snacks.

Harry proudly states: “One of the things we stand by is that we don’t have any sugar or sweeteners in our products.” 

Commitment extends beyond just the ingredients; it’s about supporting British agriculture and ensuring British provenance of all the meat used in is snacks, setting Ember apart from its competitors.

Keeping up with consumer demand

The conversation covers Ember’s journey and the evolving consumer landscape.

Despite the slow initial growth, Ember’s persistence and dedication to quality and sustainability have resonated with consumers and retailers.

“Right now, today, a consumer probably picks up one of our packets every 10 seconds from across most of the main retailers,” Harry shares, emphasising the brand’s significant progress and market penetration.

Ember now proudly produces 50,000 packets a week of beef, chicken, pork, or venison jerky and salami snacks, all while championing sustainable practices and natural ingredients.

An ethos of sustainability

Central to Ember’s ethos is the commitment to sustainability, which, according to Harry, plays a crucial role in fostering customer loyalty.

He observes: “The sustainability angle is not the primary reason [consumers] are picking our product up.” However, he acknowledges the growing segment of consumers who appreciate Ember’s story, trust, and transparency, which are increasingly influential in their purchasing decisions.

A pivotal moment in Ember’s story was achieving B Corp certification, a testament to its commitment to social and environmental performance.

Harry reflects on the rigorous process, stating: “The process to get there was not only hard, but it took time as well… over a year.”

This certification aligns with Ember’s mission to operate responsibly and sustainably, reinforcing the brand’s position in the market and among consumers who value ethical practices.

A bright future ahead

Looking ahead, Harry envisions expanding Ember’s reach and challenging traditional snacking habits.

“Our challenge is, how do we get this into being a staple household product, that people are picking up instead of their cereal bar, or their packet of crisps?” This ambition highlights Ember’s innovative spirit and commitment to redefining the snack industry.

This first episode of the new season of the Bees’ Knees Comms-Cast not only sheds light on Ember Snacks’ remarkable journey but also underscores the broader implications of sustainable and ethical business practices.

Harry Mayhew’s insights and reflections offer invaluable lessons for businesses and individuals alike, striving to make a positive impact in their industries and communities.

Through authenticity, innovation, and a commitment to doing good, Ember exemplifies what it means to be ‘the bee’s knees’ in today’s business landscape.

To listen to the whole episode and discussion between Catherine and Harry, please search for the Bees’ Knees Comms-Cast on your preferred podcast streaming platform.

Bees’ Knees Comms-Cast is proudly brought to you by Pinstone, so do get in touch if there is anyone you would like to hear from on a future episode of if you are interested in us telling your sustainable story.

Bees' Knees comms cast
Bees' Knees comms cast

Presented by...

Catherine Linch

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