Cauliflower Crust Inventor Revolutionized The Pizza Market With Million Dollar Business | MONEY

If somebody were to say three years ago, your business is going to become a multimillion-dollar business. I’d be like, ‘Are you kidding me?’ My name is Amy Lacey and I am the owner and founder of Cali’flour Foods. Cali’flour Foods was the first cauliflower pizza crust to hit the market. About 10 years ago, I was diagnosed with lupus, almost died. My intention was to really cure myself with food and make food medicine. So I started going to the Internet and looking at ways to find a grain free cauliflower pizza crust. Finally, we perfected it. We came up with this proprietary process that we still use today. Just fresh cauliflower, eggs, cheese and spices. And people loved them. And finally, our local market there said, ‘Hey, would you be interested in selling it in our market?’ So I basically cleared out our savings account. And that’s how Cali’flour Foods became a product. And it’s grown ever since then. 8 of us built this company. I hired my first employee at the end of 2016. And then by the end of 2017, I had eight employees. And in 2018, we took the company from $5.2 to $20 million. And it’s just us, eight women and one guy. None of us had, but one person, had experience in the food industry. But everybody was just hungry, humble, and had strong emotional intelligence. And those are my three criteria. But the great thing is we did do almost $20 million in E-commerce sales last year in 2018. And 95% of that was direct to consumer. 5% was Amazon. And then we had — Well, I should say a little percent was grocery. But this year, our whole goal was to go grocery. So we’ve gone nationwide with Walmart. We’re in a little over 6,000 stores now. So that’s huge growth for grocery. Surround yourself with people that know more than you do. So I was able to surround myself with like minded people so you share that same value system. Have those people working with you, but surround yourself. I have an advisory board with people that have been in the business for years. They’ve launched products that have been billion dollar products. And I want to learn from those people. Stay silent and learn from them. But don’t be afraid to take risks. You know, don’t run your business off of fear. As a startup, there was a lot of fear based decisions that I made and they became mistakes and we learned from them. So we grew but don’t operate out of fear. If you believe in it and you’re passionate enough about it and you’ve got people to support you, go for it. Go for it. And know that when those mistakes happen or those setbacks, or a day where your sales go negative and not positive that you’re in for growth, you really, truly are. You’re going to grow and — if you keep at it, it’s going to eventually stick and move forward. And that’s what happened with us. So definitely don’t be fear based, surround yourself with like minded people that are helping you, but then also surround yourself with people who have been there, done that better than you so you can learn from them. Simple, but life changing in the business for us.

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