In these times of long working hours, surplus wealth and health consciousness, several companies have popped up to supply people with healthy, convenient food.
Michael Robinov, of Farm To People, says his company is ready to take over that space and bring the consumer into the future of healthy and convenient eating.
“We’re this meal-kit generation but this meal-kit generation is going to grow out of the meal kit and they’re gonna want to know what’s next,” Robinov said in an interview on the sidewalk outside Egg, in Williamsburg. “I think this is really what’s next.”
His company was throwing a launch party to celebrate its merger with fellow natural food startup Quinciple. The meal kits he was referring to have come to popularity with companies like Blue Apron, the Manhattan-based food startup that was valued at $2 billion this summer during a funding round.
What Blue Apron does is deliver all the ingredients one would need to make a certain dish, along with recipes for how to make it. What Farm To People does is deliver whatever ingredients you want, in a box, straight from the local farmers and artisans that made them. Then you can make whatever you want, sort of splitting the difference between Blue Apron and a CSA.
“We have the best products out there,” Robinov said, in response to why his company would prosper. “We give you flexibility, if you come in and you don’t like a week you can pause, we’re giving you recipes. I think it’s much more user friendly, it’s much more accessible.”
Robinov started the company just over two years ago with his father, David Robinov. While the younger Robinov, dressed in a blazer and jeans, has what could be described as the look of the target customers in the Williamsburg world, the elder Robinov has the look of an older hippie, gray-haired and bearded, simply dressed in a denim jacket. He himself has a history in starting and growing a natural food business, with which he had some success in the ’90s and ’00s. He explained what the inspiration for Farm To People was.
“It came from the idea that there was no food in our food,” he said. “Because big business took it over and they make food for profit not for people, very simple. We’re trying to make food for people. Because that’s the way the world started, was eating real food. Because of big business and greed, people started cutting back on the way food was being produced.”