29 September 2018

Mission Driven Entrepreneur, Alix O'Hara's Solution to the Obesity Problem

| Nina Gbor
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Alix OHara: Founder of mashblox. Photos: Supplied.

Alix OHara: Founder of mashblox. Photos: Supplied.

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.

Mashblox’s mission is based on three principles:

  1. 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.
  2. 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.
  3. 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.

kid eating

Mashblox allows children to enjoy their food at their own pace, encouraging healthy eating habits.

Listen to Alix talk about her value based principles and research-driven business tenets here.

Website: https://mashblox.com
Facebook: @Mashblox
Insta: @mashblox
LinkedIn: Mashblox or Alix O’Hara
YouTube: Mashblox

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