Interested in starting your own entrepreneurial journey in food and beverage but unsure what to expect? Then read up on our interview with Delisa Harper, Co-Founder of Funky Mello, located in Austin, TX, USA.

What's your business, and who are your customers?

My business is Funky Mello! We're a feel-good food company that creates the world's FIRST refrigerated, plant-based marshmallow creme! Our customers are kids and adults with a sweet tooth looking for a tastier, cleaner dessert or sweet snack. Our marshmallow creme can be used for traditional s'mores and so much more, like coffee! All flavors also happen to be vegan, top 8 allergen-free, and gluten-free, so all sorts of diets can enjoy them.

Tell us about yourself

My husband, Zach, and I deal with different dietary restrictions, which really limit our food options. We created Funky Mello to bring back childhood favorites in a much more enjoyable way! I found that so many people struggle with enjoying food with their families and friends, especially when considering all their dietary needs. What keeps us going is hearing customers' stories of how our product is literally bringing people together or making transitions to a cleaner diet easier. One story that really touched us is that of a mother that was able to use our creme to make delicious fluffernutters (sandwiches with marshmallows and peanut butter) for the first time with her young son with allergies.

What's your biggest accomplishment as a business owner?

We're only a team of 3 people, and up until a few months ago, it was only my husband and me. So when I think about my biggest accomplishment, it's sustaining this business as a whole. This is my first business. We just launched our creme last October, and it's been in 300+ stores nationwide! We went through 2 accelerator programs, won 5 awards, and continue to handmake everything in-house. I'm extremely proud of how far we've come and even more excited about where we'll go!

What's one of the hardest things that comes with being a business owner?

For me, one of the hardest things is fundraising. It's already not my character to ask for money, but doing it on top of managing all facets of a business is pretty tough. I find myself constantly updating our pitch deck, managing relationships with potential investors while seeking new ones, and being creative on how to continue operating on a micro business budget. I've talked to many other business owners, and they all share the same sentiment.

What are the top tips you'd give to anyone looking to start, run and grow a business today?

My three tips for anyone wanting to start a business are to do something that is meaningful to you, be open to new experiences and relationships, and celebrate all wins (big or small) often. There will be plenty of good days and bad days, so when things get tough (which they will), these are some of the things that keep me going, and hopefully, it inspires others to do the same!

Where can people find you and your business?


If you like what you've read here and have your own story as a solo or small business entrepreneur that you'd like to share, then please answer these interview questions. We'd love to feature your journey on these pages.

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