Last week i had the extreme pleasure of sitting down with Callie England of Rawxies. I came across her brand on Twitter and was immediately captivated by what she was doing and who she is. It was also very timely, i was a week in to a vegan 21 day cleanse and Rawxies are not only vegan, but gluten free, soy free, peanut free, and raw. Talk about a challenge to create something within those parameters yet Callie rose to the challenge and created an amazingly delicious healthy treat.
Read more about Callie, photos of the Rawxies office and enter the giveaway after the jump!
When i sat down with Callie i commented on how the design and packaging of her products are so well done and we started to talk design. You would think the owner of a raw foods product company would have gone to culinary school, especially since she also won Hot Raw Chef in 2012, but she didn't, she went to art school. She always felt like the two loves of her life were art & design and healthy eating and she felt like they didn't go together, that for some reason the culture of eating a whole foods diet meant you had to fall into a granola stereotype. So after graduating from KCAI she was working as an art director by day and writing a blog centered around making whole foods foxy at nights and on the weekends. Her blog gained such popularity and she was asked constantly for a food product so she decided to take the plunge and start the Rawxies brand.
Upon entering the Rawxies office you'll be greeted by Callie's adorable poodle polo and the unmistakeable feeling that the person who works here cares about her office space. I loved the eclectic furniture in her office, a gorgeous green painted side table to keep personal items, beautiful framed photos of rawxies next to pieces of art on the wall and a comfortable sitting area with plush furniture in the main space. Callie is warm and friendly and you can tell as you talk to her that she puts all her energy behind her brand, that she loves what she is selling and you should too. There is no doubt that her hard work has paid off, at the natural products expo Rawxies were chosen to be in the top 6 vegan products and with over 2500 companies exhibiting thats no small feat! She is also on her way to being carried in stores all across the country, see a full list of stores that already carry her products HERE.
I love that she is taking a niche food and turning it mainstream with the taste and design of the product. We both agreed that packaging and how you present yourself to the world is key, but even if you have a great brand identity if your selling food it has to taste good and Raxies delivers on all accounts. I mean can we just talk about for a second that these little hybrid cookie-bars are heart shaped?! Callie was so kind and let me take home one of each of her products to sample, I am in love with the banana nut bread rawxies, but really you can't go wrong they are all yummy. If you are more of a savory than sweet person you will love the 3 crunches, they are packed with mixes of seeds and different spice blends and are great as a snack or to top off salads.
Rawxies brand motto is "stop eating crap!" and in my opinion Callie is entering the marketplace at an ideal time where we not only want such a fun product but our bodies need it, like desperately. These last 3 weeks while i've been on the 21 day cleanse i've realized that eating a plant based diet takes a good amount of prep and work compared to the average american diet of take-out and packaged foods, but its So so worth it. I feel so different than a month ago (more on that in another post) but the fact of the matter is we all have busy lives and sometimes pulling through the drive-through seems like the only option. This is exactly why i love rawxies they give me another option that is so guilt-free and i love it.
One of my favorite things that Callie said is that she encourages everyone to be vegan for a period of time because it teaches you to cook in different ways. I 100% agree and love that my mind has been opened to creating entire meals with just fruits, vegetables, nuts and seeds and that i now know that i feel better when i cut out the junk. As Callie says "Take control of your health" and do it through eating good whole foods.
That being said everyone loves to go out every now and then and i asked Callie what some of her favorite spots here in KC are, she frequents The Westside Local, Tanin Wine Bar, and Grand Street Cafe. When i asked her if she eats strictly raw or vegan she says she doesn't anymore that for several years of her life she was strictly raw and today she cares more about the quality of the food she eats than anything else, she calls her self a "qualitarian". I love this quote from her in her about section on her blog
"Sure, I eat foods like spirulina, sauerkraut and kefir almost everyday, but there are those occasional times where I let go and eat traditionally. I believe life is all about balance and I’ll never pretend to be something I’m not. So many dogmatic diets nowadays teach people bad emotional eating practices – you can have this, you can’t have that. It shouldn’t be about what you can/can’t have, but rather, it should be about what you choose. And, if for some reason you make a less than ideal choice one day, it’s not the end of the world – We are human after all!”
I am always inspired when i meet people who follow their passions and make things happen, Callie is one of those people. With her determination and drive i think we will be seeing a lot more of rawxies in the future. If you'd like the full line of Rawxies products delivered to your door enter the giveaway below! One lucky winner will get one of each of the four flavors or rawxies and all 3 crunches!