Sarah Wixon, Zoe Rookes and Maggie Peacock met at high school in Hawkes Bay when they were placed in a team together for the Young Enterprise Scheme. Their business Bayuble and idea to create compostable fruit stickers won the region’s Young Enterprise Scheme award in 2018. Now at University, the three founders placed third equal in Soda’s latest seed grant.

Tell us about Bayuble...

Bayuble is a business focused on creating home compostable packaging from food waste - starting with fruit stickers. It was founded by three young wahine who wanted to solve an environmental problem - no matter how 'small'.

How did the idea for Bayuble come about?

We knew we wanted to solve some sort of environmental problem and simply looked around us. We were surrounded by orchards living in the fruit bowl of New Zealand (Hawkes Bay) and realised how annoying fruit stickers were, not to mention that they are made of plastic! We did some research and discovered there were no viable alternatives to the current plastic fruit stickers so decided to do something about it.

What stage is your business currently at?

We are currently in a development phase and looking forward to taking our next step into the market as soon as possible.

What has been your biggest entrepreneurial challenge so far?

Finding a good balance between, Bayuble, life, and university studies was an initial challenge, hence we left things on the backburner for our first year of study.

We decided that we needed to feel excited again and overcome any feelings of pressure or nervousness to do with Bayuble and its future success. When we realised our main priorities were to: learn a lot, make great connections, and have fun along the way - it made us stronger as a trio to support each other and accelerate the business. This mindset shift enabled us to think even bigger, and ultimately be on track to produce an exciting product.

Who or what inspires you?

Fellow entrepreneurs, especially young female ones.

What has been your biggest learning on this journey?

We have been pleasantly surprised by the willingness of so many kind people who have helped by donating their time and expertise to our idea. These acts of kindness from others make us feel like a part of a wider community of innovators and entrepreneurs and it is awesome to have that support. One day, we'd love to be able to give back our time and expertise, just as it has been given to us.

What advice would you give other start-ups?

Don't be afraid to ask and reach out for help. People, especially fellow entrepreneurs, are always willing to help as they know exactly what it is like to be in your shoes. Also focus on niche markets! It is easy to get excited about all the other products or things you could make but focus on success in your niche first, and whatever you create does not need to be perfect right away!

What is your goal for Bayuble?

Our dream is to see our stickers on fruit in supermarkets. First in New Zealand, but then internationally would be awesome! In five years we would love to be creating other types of packaging or producing our stickers for other products and industries.