“I didn’t want my degree to be a waste of time.”
Finding the sweet spot in vegetable-based flours
Annelia Lian Davis is a young, vibrant, God-fearing, caring and energetic person who loves spending time with her family and loves food and agriculture. In 2019, she graduated with a Bachelor’s of Science in Food Science and Technology (Hons) from the University of Trinidad and Tobago. Taste of Tobago had the opportunity to catch up with Annelia to share her inspiring story.
I knew I would be an entrepreneur from an early age due to my exposure to the Agriculture sector; however, attending UTT made those aspirations more apparent.
I love working on my father’s land in the village of Goodwood and coming into myself as a Tobagonian entrepreneur. I grew up seeing plants grow in their different stages. My family would come together and harvest melons. If a melon burst while harvesting, we would eat it on the spot.
Qualifying myself allowed me the ability to focus on quality assurance. At the same time, my passion and love for results honed the skills to provide exceptional customer service. I wanted to start my entrepreneurial pursuit a year after being employed to accumulate funds but I started earlier than planned due to unemployment.
I didn’t want my degree to feel like a waste of time. So I tried to perfect my craft and not get complacent. Since everyone started becoming farmers, I wanted to be unique; creating Health Conscious Living fulfilled that purpose.
My business offers a range of gluten-free flour types using local produce, focusing on my indigenous heritage. In addition to an increase in profit margin, success is the satisfaction I get from testimonials from customers who use my product and indicate how positively it has impacted their quality of living. My intense focus on quality assurance and exceptional customer service delivery came first. After that, success was imminent by conducting market research and offering a unique product, a clear strategy, and a positive attitude. Social media also contributed a lot to the success of my business and provided a free platform that has a broad reach both internationally and locally.
I am interested in seeing different businesses like mine provide more local and healthier alternatives to boost the manufacturing sector in Tobago and also to be able to export these goods while seeing a reduction in our food importation bill. Therefore, I hope that the upcoming industry trend will focus more on healthier products using local produce.
My family (especially my mother and sister) and close friend Nikki are so crucial to me. Ideas come to me randomly; I would be talking to my mom and sister, and just like that, an idea comes to mind. So when planning your strategy, don’t overthink it. Do the research, don’t be too dependent on family and friends to support your venture.
Most of my support comes mainly from persons I didn’t interact with before, constantly having a positive attitude, and praying for guidance and wisdom.
I heard the most important advice to combat the challenges I have faced thus far since I had some influential and wise entrepreneurs/ persons in my circle.
Health Conscious Living
Contact: (868) 281-2431
Photo Credits: Annelia Davis