As it’s Sugar Free September we’ve been getting to know some of our favourite low sugar brands, and this week we’ve been chatting to Gemma – the woman behind the naturally flavoured drinks brand no&more. Gemma’s been telling us everything, from what goes on behind the scenes, to where they want to take the brand in the future. Have a read of our catch up below.
First up, what prompted you to start a sugar free drinks brand like no&more? Have you always been health conscious?
I have always been health conscious, but what really prompted me to launch no&more was the birth of my first son. I realised that there were no healthy drinks on the market that also had no sugar, no sweeteners, no preservatives and no artificial ingredients. So my business partner Christine and I decided we were going to be the ones filling this gap by offering people a ‘no junk more funk’ alternative. no&more is a spring water ‘funked up’ with natural flavours and extracts to encourage people to drink more water.
On your bottles you talk about ‘no junk, more funk’, can you tell us a little bit more about what this means for no&more’s ingredients and approach?
Life is all about balance. At no&more we believe that saying ‘no’ to an unhealthy lifestyle doesn’t mean saying goodbye to the fun side of things. For instance, I have always struggled to fit everything into my schedule, trying to do the most I possibly could on a daily basis. But I slowly realised that I would much rather say no to some of these things in order to make space for others and give 100%. I soon discovered that I was enjoying life so much more. So our ‘no junk more funk’ motto fully describes what our ethos and our products are all about.
You’ve got loads of great flavours, where do you get the ideas from and then how do you go about developing these and getting them into the finished product?
Our flavours reflect the taste and personality of each of our team members. We come up with a lot of extravagant and playful ideas and also get inspired by our friends, family and customers. We test different combinations on them first. If a flavour gets their approval, then we extend the tests to a wider network of people. We have an amazing R&D team in our lab, and we work with some of the best flavour houses in Europe to select the highest quality extracts. Ultimately, this is all that matters since nothing else goes in our drinks.
What are your goals for no&more over the next 5 years? Are you mainly focusing on the UK or other countries too?
We want to see the brand grow internationally. Our main focus at the moment is in the UK, France and the Netherlands, but we envisage a wider growth to the European market in the next 5 years.
What’s a typical day like at no&more HQ?
The real answer is that there is not such thing as a typical day here… this is why we never get bored! We couldn’t have a more diverse team: different age, different nationalities, and different backgrounds. Our diversity is what brings us together. Communication is key within our team and we’re always trying to innovate, be it by finding new ideas, new collaborations, new projects, or new flavour combinations. There’s always a challenge and definitely an opportunity to learn from each other. Building up a company from scratch is tough and incredibly rewarding at the same time.
Is there anything you wish people knew about the brand that they might not know from just having seen your products on shelf?
Our water has neutral pH because we don’t add any preservatives, not even citric acid. People don’t often realise that most flavored waters available on the market are acidic, which in the long run is quite bad for your health, especially for your teeth. Drinking no&more is like drinking natural spring water with an extra flavour kick, which makes it more interesting.
If you like the sound of no&more’s funky sugar free drinks then head to their website to buy a case now. Or you can pick up a bottle in Sainsburys, Waitrose, Wholefoods or Holland & Barrett.