Schelte Lettinga, co-owner of Sparckitchen:

“Sparckitchen is owned by my second cousin Pablo Buwalda and me. We both have both Frisian and agricultural roots. His grandfather and my father grew potatoes, carrots, grains and beets, among other things, in Friesland. Using local, pure and natural ingredients as a base, Pablo started producing vegan food in 2015, such as the red-beet burger, the celeriac burger, döner kebab and köfte. They are truly plant-based products, with no soy and no artificial additives and preservatives. I joined the company three years ago and now the daily management is in my hands

We have an FSSC22000-certified production site on Zeeburgerpad in the centre of Amsterdam that meets all food safety and hygiene requirements. We took advantage of the corona period to automate part of the production, but the passion and drive with which we work has remained. And you can taste that

Lots of potential
The weekly production of our seven employees is initially stored in our own cold store, which has limited capacity. Once a week, a Frigo box truck comes by to transport our products to the cold store in Nieuw-Vennep. Frigo Group Logistics then takes care of distribution from there to the wholesalers who supply our end users. These are mainly the better restaurants, including chains such as Loetje and The Harbour Club. We call it ‘Chef driven’ ourselves. Or ‘from chef to chef’, because we explicitly involve the chefs who put our products on the menus in putting together and perfecting our products.

Besides a number of butchers, a growing number of hospitals are also buying our most protein-rich products. And we also see a lot of potential in the consumer market: if someone likes our beetroot burger in the restaurant, he or she will like it at home too. An additional advantage is that all our products are very easy to prepare. We have just bought a food truck, with which we will visit a number of festivals starting next summer. That is our first step in the B2C field and who knows where it will lead.

Frigo Group has been our logistics partner for three years and we like it a lot. Thanks to its own WMS portal, I can manage the stock in Nieuw-Vennep in real time from Amsterdam. That works very well. We really see Frigo as an extension of our company, facilitating our growth. Unlike the production capacity at our current location, the storage capacity is unlimited. We can rent as many pallet spaces as we want, so to speak. The lines of communication between us and Frigo are very short and direct. Their flexibility is a breath of fresh air. And I don’t think they know the word ‘no’ at Frigo. For example, if I ask them to take a few boxes out of the freezer, because we have received a last-minute order, it is always done.”