Vitto Baskets – local fresh produce Delivered to your door
By Vitto Baskets
September 03, 2021
Did you know the “fresh” produce from your local grocery on average travels over 1,500 miles to get from the farm to your plate? Nevermind the near endless amount of middlemen handling your food from industrial production to the stocking of shelves. Options to eat locally grown, organic food in urban areas are limited with the only available options being expensive and time consuming.
Vitto Baskets is a local produce delivery service founded with the sole mission of making local produce quick, affordable, and above all else, easily accessible. Through connections with a network of local farms, Vitto Baskets bridges the gap between local farms and consumers with weekly deliveries of produce brought from the farm to your doorstep on the same day.
What is a Vitto Basket?
Vitto Baskets are packages of locally sourced fruits and vegetables, delivered straight to your doorstep. They come in two varieties: the mixed basket and the vegetable basket. The former contains a mix of locally grown fruits and vegetables while the latter is packed with a large variety of locally grown vegetables.
Each basket contains a variety of the following:
In addition, each Vitto Basket is packed with biodegradable lining, ready-to-use recipes, and personalized notes for each customer. With each Vitto Basket we deliver, we aim to make eating local as simple as possible by making the customer our top priority.
What Inspired you and your team to tackle this issue?
We took on the challenge of redefining what it means to eat locally because of our team’s passion for the farmers market. As a performing musician at a number of farmers markets, I’ve grown to love the community they attract and the wide range of produce and other goods available; but I realize the scene isn’t for everyone. The process is slow, time consuming, and different fruits and vegetables spread out across the whole market can make the process confusing. A majority of people will opt to shop for produce through retail chains instead, but in doing so, they miss out on the ability to eat locally grown, organic produce straight from the farm.
My team’s experiences with the farmers market were similar. We wanted a way for ordinary consumers to have access to the same locally grown products as those who went to farmers markets. At first, we devised an online marketplace for customers to go and find the products they wanted to buy. But even then, we wanted to simplify the process further. We needed to create a solution that allowed customers to enjoy locally sourced produce in as few steps as possible.
The Company’s Traction
By the end of LaunchX, Vitto Baskets was still just a concept. We had validated the need for our product, designed packaging, created a whole brand, and had even developed a fully operational e-commerce platform to support our vision. But we had yet to deliver any products.
What held us back was partnering with farms. With only so many farms a drivable distance away, our options were numbered. As such we had to make sure our pitch was as perfect as could be. We sent out emails to all nearby farms with our perfect pitch 2 weeks before the end of the program, hoping for the best. At first, all went according to plan.
As soon as we got our first response, we started to daydream about the future success of our company and the traction we could showcase at Demo Day. But eventually, our leads stopped responding, our website views slowed, and our company email dried up. We were stuck—after all, our whole idea revolved around finding a reliable supplier.
Good news wouldn’t come until nearly one week after LaunchX had ended. As a company, we were stuck, yes, but that didn’t mean we stopped trying. When our leads dried up, we followed up; when our website traffic slowed down, we doubled down on promoting ourselves; and when farms didn’t respond, we drove to their houses, sat down at their computers, and responded for them.
For legal reasons, the last one didn’t happen—but the point still stands. Our persistence in making the idea work is what led to our success. Was luck involved? Yes! 100%, I don’t deny that. We could’ve just as easily been ignored by every farm despite our best efforts; but we could have also accepted our defeat when we stopped getting responses and moved on.
So where are we today? I’m glad you asked. After advertising our service through our local HOA, small business administration, and social media platforms, our sales far surpassed our expectations. Within only a month of operation, we’ve sold over $1,000 of Vitto Baskets with plans to sell thousands of dollars more in the upcoming months. With local newspaper publications, partnerships with local nonprofits, and soon to come additional locations, we have big plans for the company.
Advice For The Next Entrepreneurs
Move Fast and Break Things
I can’t remember one time in Vitto Baskets’ early Stages that I felt completely confident in what we were doing. One day we were crafting our brand’s logo and the very next we were deciding on pricing and our marketing campaign. When starting a company, you can’t fixate on the details. There is no perfect name for your company, no 100% optimal way to reach your customer base, and no perfect font for the body text on your company webpage. In the early stages, just put something out there. The details will figure themselves out as the company progresses, but the company will never progress if you can’t get started. Eventually, consumers will tell you what they love and hate about your product, you’ll come to figure out a name that perfectly represents you and your company, and you might even get one angry, poorly-formatted email demanding that you change your website font from Times New Roman to Open Sans.
Every Startup Will Face Roadblocks, But Only Some Will Get Through Them
Some roadblocks are tougher to get through than others. Unfortunately, some teams will hit roadblocks that can’t be gotten through; but on the off chance that your team perseveres and succeeds, the effort is worth it. Vitto Baskets would have easily been a failure had we let getting no responses deter us. We kept trying because we knew the idea had potential, and eventually, we were able to land a partnership. Take on every challenge with the mentality that you can get through it, and you might just be right.
Team Synergy Above All Else
I wholeheartedly believe that Vitto Baskets would have gone nowhere without a team fully committed to bringing the idea to market. My team’s synergy could not have been better, and I want to stress that no matter how good your idea is, your team will be the deciding factor of whether or not your company succeeds. Consider getting to know your team. Play some games with them! For any team looking for team bonding experiences, I can’t recommend Geoguessr enough.
Vitto Baskets consists of 4 members: Hunter Habersaat (COO), Luna Wang (CMO), Akeil Smith (CTO), and Elianna Huang (CFO). With each of their backgrounds, they bring unique perspectives and skills to the Vitto Baskets team that continue to propel their company forward.
Want to keep up to date with their progress? Check out their website here! or follow them on their Instagram: @Vitto_Baskets.