Mission-driven entrepreneurship is the new capitalism, spear-headed by entrepreneurs driven to make a positive change in the world, in addition to profits. This noble pursuit is often born out of personal experience where the mission-driven entrepreneur is striving to create the positive change they want to see in the world.
Multi award-winning Canberra businesswoman, Alix O’Hara is the founder CEO and inventor of Mashblox, the infant self-feeding tool. Mashblox is more than just a cool, trendy product – it serves the primary purpose of making it easier for parents to feed their kids, including coaxing them to eat healthy mash foods without the fuss and hassle. Mashblox’s business model partners with academic institutions to conduct extensive research into causes of obesity and food-related health issues. The aim of the company is to provide a solution to obesity and minimise other health issues through changing our relationship with food.
Nina Gbor meets entrepreneur, innovator and founder of infant self-feeding tool Mashblox Alix O’Hara. Alix shares why environmental sustainability is critical to her business, explains more about the awards she has won after just a short time in business, and how her personal experiences with food have shaped the philosophy behind the Mashblox system. Press play to hear more about Alix's big visions and goals for her business.
Posted by The RiotACT on Saturday, September 29, 2018
Mashblox’s mission is based on three principles:
- Children naturally self-regulate for their energy requirements. Spoon-feeding children, like bottle feeding, is a factor linked to obesity risk. Adults just need to support them to eat at their own pace. The child’s instincts know when to stop.
- While there is substantial evidence already behind this hypothesis, more research is needed. Mashblox has an opportunity to advance current self-feeding research by giving kids the tools to handle age-appropriate textures while reducing mess and choking risk.
- Environmental sustainability; pre-made baby foods are sending a huge amount of waste to landfill every year. Mashblox already has a popular reusable product to serve home made mashed foods, but is also creating bioplastics that they intend to license to baby food companies to revolutionise baby food packaging. This design will also support savoury and textured foods, revolutionising how and what children are fed and why.
In describing her vision for a cultural shift to healthier eating habits, Alix hopes that in 20 years, obesity due to overeating patterns will be halved or reduced by 20 per cent of what it currently is. She goes on further to say that people’s instincts should be allowed to develop on their own terms instead of inflicting habits on them. Stress eating, for example, is a learned behaviour. It’s not natural for young children to revert to food when they are stressed, or upset. Overeating is a learned behaviour too. Alix would like Mashblox to be part of that solution and to be recognised as the pioneering business behind the change.
Listen to Alix talk about her value based principles and research-driven business tenets here.