Craig Blatch, Mark Pages and Gladys Pages make up the team at Phytality Nutrition and they feature as this week’s Aussie Vegan Business of the Week. Phytoplankton is super rich in omega 3 and contains more than 75 nutrients. ULTANA is a more natural, sustainable and effective alternative to fish oil, krill oil, multivitamins and processed supplements.
You can learn more on the Phytality page here.
Who is in the Phytality Nutrition team and how long have you been vegan?
Phytality Nutrition is a small start-up based in Byron Bay. We are currently a team of three – Mark & Gladys Pages, and myself, Craig Blatch. Friends for more than twenty years, and now in business together, we all transitioned to a vegetarian diet over a decade ago, and I became vegan nearly 9 years ago.
When did you guys get started?
ULTANA Phytoplankton was officially launched in Australia on World Vegan Day 2018 (November 1st) however it has been a journey of over a decade to get to this point!
We also launched in the UK earlier this year!
What challenges did you face in starting your business and now that it’s up and running?
Our biggest challenge is education. As our product is ‘under-the-radar’, and largely unknown, it’s quite an undertaking to educate both stockists and customers about the nutritional content and health benefits of ULTANA.
Once people grasp the scope of the product however, they are immediately in awe!
It seems to me that what you are doing is quite scientific, what is your background in the field?
Mark has a lengthy history working with labs in Europe, and has absorbed a massive amount of knowledge hanging out with scientists during that time. My job is to filter the scientific jargon into something that our customers will understand 🙂
What strengths and weaknesses do you think come from being a specifically vegan business?
The vegan community are so wonderful and tribal, and there’s an instant connection when dealing with vegan customers.
People become vegan for many reasons, and many are not necessarily concerned with personal health, so it can be challenging to convince them that they need to look after their own well-being.
What’s the thing best about running your business?
Being involved with something quite innovative, as well as providing ‘the missing piece of the puzzle’ in terms of vegan nutrition. I’ve lived by the beach most of my life, and with our oceans under increasing stress, I feel proud to be working on sustainable alternatives to fish and krill oil.
What would say is the ‘secret sauce’ that makes your business so special?
Between the three of us, we have a great mix of knowledge and passion for innovation, sustainability and plant-based nutrition. I think our customers can sense our excitement when we talk about the product.
Our product is also very novel, so it’s exciting to be part of something ground-breaking and new, that can help the vegan community to thrive.
Looking forward what does the future hold for Phytality Nutrition?
We are incredibly lucky to have had the support of Australia’s largest health food chain, Go Vita, since our launch. They share our passion for the product and are stocking it around the country.
We’re now welcoming new stockists to ensure ULTANA is as widely available as possible.
And we also have a few exciting new products in the planning stage.
Anything else you would like to add?
We’re excited to see the huge growth of veganism in Australia and around the world.
In order to thrive and feel vital, it’s important to ensure you are getting a wide range of plant-based foods.
There are fewer plant-based sources of some nutrients such as B12 and Omega-3 long chain fatty acids, and these need to be considered to ensure optimal health.
It’s possible to thrive on a well-planned vegan diet!