Welcome to our Spark! Meet the Founder series, where we introduce you to the amazing entrepreneurs who are participating in our 2022 Spring Spark! program with a quick Q&A!
Spark! is a small business accelerator that puts the right people, opportunities, and access in place for local entrepreneurs in Arkansas to take their venture to the next level.
Please meet Sara Hurst, founder of Bella’s Kitchen + Wellness, a wellness and prepared meals service.
The Venture Center: Tell us about your business!
Sara Hurst: Bella’s Kitchen and Wellness offers prepared fresh and delicious everyday meals that will nourish you. We believe in a whole-food, plant-forward diet, and we understand sensitivities and allergies so we will list ingredients as well as special diets, such as gluten-free, dairy-free, vegan, vegetarian. We offer delivery and pick-up in the Little Rock/North Little Rock metro area.
Why did you start Bella’s Kitchen?
The idea for Bella’s Kitchen and Wellness came up after I needed to start feeding my daughter Bella solids, and I could not find any prepared baby-led feeding options. Our family loves eating fresh, nutritious foods and when I couldn’t find anything else but highly processed meals at the store, I knew there had to be another solution. As a mom, I know how hard it is to have a home-cooked meal ready after a long day. So that’s how Bella’s Kitchen and Wellness started.
What are your biggest challenges as a business owner?
The biggest challenge to me is that I have to wear many hats to run a business, because it would be too expensive to hire out for every job I need done. With the pandemic, it was also very hard to hire employees in the restaurant industry and we are just now able to find talented workers.
What does the future of Bella’s Kitchen look like?
I hope that we are able to grow in this market and hopefully scale into a nationwide delivery service, or into a franchise level.
What is your biggest source of pride today?
I’m proud over 95% of my sales come from people I have never met and that my best customer is someone I’ve never met, yet she orders weekly. It reassures me that the products are good.
What do you hope to gain from Spark!?
I hope to be able to learn how to grow and scale my business.
Huge thanks to Sara Hurst for participating in Spark! We can’t wait to see your business grow! Sign up for our newsletter and follow The Venture Center on social media to keep up with our Spark! 2022 cohort!