We caught up with Dr Sophie Niedermaier-Patramani, co-founder and in house paediatrician at baby food subscription service Little Tummy, to hear all about how they’re helping parents give their babies the nutrients they need in a very convenient way…
Tell us about Little Tummy
Little Tummy makes parents’ lives easier and babies’ lives healthier by delivering cold-pressed meals directly to their doorsteps. Our meals are cold-pressed to retain micronutrients and authentic flavour and texture – an important ingredient for a child’s sensory development in the first year of life. All recipes are developed by myself, a paediatrician with more than 10 years’ clinical experience, and are made to meet the nutritional needs of our customers.
How did you come up with the idea for the business?
As a paediatrician I have been guiding parents on their weaning journey for more than 10 years. It was exasperating not to be able to recommend a healthy yet convenient way to introduce solids to their little ones in the first year of life. Heat-sterilised baby jars and pouches are high in sugar, lack micronutrients and rob babies’ opportunities to explore a variety of authentic flavours. On the other hand, I was desperate to offer time-restricted parents with a solution that didn’t involve hours of shopping and cooking.
When my co-founder Nadine (Hellmann) approached me with her idea to bring cold-pressed baby meals to the European market, I immediately embraced the idea. Here was the moment to bring change to the baby food market, and create a healthy and nutritious alternative for my little patients.
Why do you think subscriptions boxes have become so popular in recent years?
There are probably two sides to this, the first one being the more obvious one: Subscription boxes are incredibly convenient. A customer can tailor their box to their needs and won’t have to think about having to go out and buy top up ingredients. This is especially important to parents who are under enormous time pressure as is.
The second reason might be more related to customer psychology. A subscription box with a unique and seamless end-to-end experience brings a feeling of reward and pleasure to the customer. If, in addition, customers can personalise their subscription box or benefit in any other way from added value, they will be incentivised to continue purchasing.
What advice would you give to other young, female entrepreneurs looking to start a business?
Not for a single second have I regretted the jump into cold water. I can only say to anyone who has a brilliant idea: go out and do it. Surround yourself with a supportive peer group. Since I have started on my entrepreneurial path, I have regularly attended meetups and seminars to meet like-minded people, mainly women. Throughout my career, I have always had wonderful and supportive mentors, which is also something I would highly recommend.
What can we expect to see from Little Tummy in the future?
Our customers’ feedback is invaluable and we listen closely to their wishes. This is why we are busy working on increasing our recipe range in the baby food sector. Towards the end of summer, we will also share more news about exciting toddler products!