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Our 5 minutes with Natalie King
1. Lets introduce you with your vital stats.... What’s your name and what local business do you own?
Natalie King, founder of nat&co, handcrafted and hand wrapped fruit & nut snacks.
2. Can you tell us a bit more about nat&co ? Where can we find you and what do you do?
Natchsticks are a premium collection of healthy and nutritious fruit and nut snacks for all the family to enjoy. They are raw, vegan friendly, dairy free and high in fibre.
We offer 5 flavours which include banana and cinnamon, raspberry and rosewater, turmeric and chia seed, cacao and maca and cacao and peppermint. We are also offering a special Christmas collection of flavoured natchstichs including Christmas Mess, Mulled Wine and an Alternative Mince Pie Brownie. You can order our snacks from our online shop natand.co.uk and from the local farmers market every month held at the community center. We are at The Vegan Christmas Fair on Sunday 8th December in Southend and we are also very proud to be stocked at The Hatch in Old Leigh.
3. What have you found is key to running a successful business in leigh-on-sea?
You get to know the people around, often on a first name basis. As such, a big part hinges on your relationships with people. Both criticism and compliments can spread fast, so its essential to be friendly, courteous and reliable in all your dealings – both personal and professional. This in-turn should encourage customers to return, and hopefully, recommend me and my products. Seeing the same faces return to buy my snacks at the leigh farmers market every month is a truly lovely feeling and encourages me to take my business forward. The support has been amazing.
4. What made you decide on a career within your sector?
For the last 10 years I have worked alongside my dad in our family business, with health and fitness being something I throw myself into in my spare time. I’ve worked hard, trained hard and enjoyed my life by the seaside.
I’m a life-long foodie and a giving person at heart, and have always baked out of the love of seeing people enjoy what I’ve made for them. Over the past year or so I’ve become so passionate about clean eating I decided to make my ‘side hustle’ a business. With the support of my family I’ve been working hard to develop my passions for health and wellbeing and create something for myself. I have a background in dance, exercise daily and have run half-marathons. Thinking about what I put into my body has become natural to me; but I know this isn’t easy for everyone and comes with challenges.
Being passionate about wellness, my aim was to create a product packed with flavour and quality ingredients.
5. So, a little more about the little town that we all love... Where is your favourite place in leigh-on-sea? Are you more of a broadway soul or an old town soul?
I feel very privileged to live in such a lovely town and fortunate to be a stones throw away from Old Leigh; especially as I wake each morning to breathtaking estuary views. I love to sit and relax with my dog at Sara's Tea Garden, It's such a quaint, welcoming place that has such a lovely atmosphere and very friendly staff.
6. If you could live anywhere else in the world, where would it be and why?
Switzerland, quality of living better. Cleaner, higher pay, crime is low.
7. Can you tell us your favourite memory you hold in Leigh-on-sea?
The day I viewed my first property in leigh. My 1bed flat along Pall Mall. I was with my mum and we were so excited. After the viewing we walked round to the broadway and had a delicious lunch at The Sand Bar - lovely clams with a beautiful view of the estuary, sun shining everyone so friendly - I knew this was just the start of my new life in lovely leigh.
8. Do you have a favorite bar or restaurant you go to in the town and if so, which one is it and why?
Currently my favourite place to dine out in Leigh has to be Fellini's Dolce Vita. Excellent food and surroundings, and fantastic staff, love it in there. Also like to pay a visit to the Cellar, wine bar, impressive wine selection, intimate atmosphere and friendly staff.
9. When did you last do a forward roll?
Must be 25 years ago, back at school
10. Finally, there any immediate exciting plans in the pipeline for nat&co. that you would like to share with our leigh-on-sea.com readers?
nat&co. has some exciting new flavours being launched in the new year as well as new products including mini bites packaged in “share bags” and make your own ready mix for the whole family to enjoy making their own healthy snacks.
We are also hoping to be stocked in other retailers around Leigh and Southend, watch this space. You can follow our story on IG #natandcouk and FB natandcofood To buy any of our products please visit www.natand.co.uk Happy Snacking N. x