Unloved fruit and vegetables find a new purpose as pure fruit sweets, snacks, tea infusions, granola and many other goodies
Sam Serveert saves unloved fruit and vegetables of organic origin 'with a corner off', seasonal abundance, products with a use-by date and a wild pick of nuts, blossoms, flowers, herbs and more. Products on offer are preserved using drying techniques that turn the 'surpluses' into exclusive, honest, healthy, vitamin and fibre-rich fruit nibbles with a harmonious, very varied and pure taste palette. The range goes from pure fruit candy over different kinds of granola and muesli to tea infusions and nut-delicate fruit truffles.
Fruit and vegetables with 'bumps and bruises' or a strange shape often go unsold and end up in the rubbish dump. In this way, tons of food are lost every year, while they were actually still perfectly edible. Sam Janssens, founder of Sam Serveert, wants to do something about it. She collects fruit and vegetables from local organic growers and shops 'with a corner cut off' in order to revalue them. In this way, she also invests in the short chain. She also gives the abundance of the season, products with an almost expired best-before date and a wild picking of nuts, blossoms, flowers, herbs and more a new destination. Her inspiration: the great taste of foodwaste.
How does Sam manage it?
Thanks to her drying ovens, she can slowly dry everything at a low temperature. This technique ensures that the products keep much longer, while the nutritious vitamins remain largely intact and the pure, intense flavour of the fruit is preserved. What you will not find in the dried creations are artificial flavourings and colourings, preservatives, additives or added sugars and sugar substitutes. So you can be sure that all the products are made from pure ingredients and come from organic and completely plant-based sources. So you can have a healthy 'snack' without feeling guilty.
On the website samserveert.be you can order dried treats to feast on, such as the Chocoranges and the Pjoer Froet snacks, buy fruit slices for in your cocktail or mocktail, find richly filled fruit mueslis, discover Pjoeri's infusion teas that go wonderfully well with her festive fruit truffles.
Besides being a circular enterprise, Sam Serveert is also a social enterprise. For washing and cutting the products, Sam can count on the help of people with a distance to the labour market. In this way, she creates equal opportunities and also saves the talents of these people.
What does the future look like for Sam Serveert?
First and foremost, Sam wants to be able to scale up quickly. That way, she can employ even more people with a distance from the labour market to contribute to a socially relevant story. Sam Serveert sees endless applications for fruit waste streams, but her head is too small for all the creative ideas and her two hands are too few to get everything into production. That is why she is still looking for more sustainable partnerships. She is looking for a local social partner to outsource the processing and production process to, and local organic farmers can offer their fruit surpluses.
In order to generate even more social and ecological impact, Sam Serveert also wants to extend its concept to customised companies and food hubs in other cities and municipalities so that local collaborations and productions can be started up there too. If you are interested in this, please send an e-mail to firstname.lastname@example.org