Rubies in the Rubble have a range of award-winning relishes, ketchups and mayos stocked in supermarkets and delis across the UK. What sets this business apart from the crowd is that their products are made from surplus ingredients, that would otherwise go to waste. They call them ‘Condiments with a Conscience’.
We had the opportunity to chat with the founder, Jenny Costa, so we could get to know one of our wonderful sponsors a little bit more.
How did Rubies in The Rubble all begin?
After reading about the scale of the problem of food waste got I thinking about what could be done with all this surplus produce. Surely there was a way of creating a first-class product using excess produce? Armed with some family recipes and a car-bootful of rescued fruit & veg from the New Covent Garden market Rubies in the Rubble was born.
Why did you choose for the products to be plant-based?
There was a sheer amount of produce that was being wasted, which happened to be vegetables. We want to ensure that ingredients are sustainably sourced - buying fresh goods locally and in season where possible, to utilise natures gluts.
What is your best-seller product?
Our best seller is our Spicy Tomato Relish, made with fresh tomatoes simmered with roasted Indian spices. 20 tomatoes are saved in every jar! It was our first ever recipe and Im still obsessed with it – I eat it every day and use it on everything. Its fresh and spicy and I think completes any dish!
“1/3 of farmers crops don’t reach supermarket shelves, yet many people go to bed hungry every night.”
What do you think the biggest problem in the food industry is at the moment?
1/3 of farmers crops don’t reach supermarket shelves, yet many people go to bed hungry every night.
Is it difficult to find businesses that will happily hand over what they intend to throw away?
We work direct with Farmers who have surplus due to surplus and demand imbalances or rejected crop for size, shape or colour. They put so much work into creating great produce that they are delighted to have a market for their whole crop and for us, the produce is fresher than anything you could buy! We are not about taking past its best produce – that doesn’t make great products! Its about the rejected crop due to aesthetic standards or beautifully ripe crop that needs to be enjoyed immediately.
What is the biggest challenge you face as a sustainable business?
Keeping to our ethos in every area of business and never taking short cuts! We are definitely not perfect and are on a journey but we are constantly trying to analysis every part of our production and product journey to make it more sustainable.
“Plan and be aware of what you have.”
What’s your advice for those who would like to reduce their food waste?
Plan and be aware of what you have... Know whats in your fridge, start with what you have and create recipes round them. I utilise your freezer to the max - popping in any leftovers for another day, half a loaf of fresh bread, surplus bread into soup etc etc!
Do you have any big plans for the future?
We have great plans for 2019 which is super exciting – having grown the team and launching a new product, its all go go go!!
BOOK YOUR TICKETS AND LEARN MORE ABOUT HOW TO LIVE ZERO-WASTE AT VEVOLUTION FESTIVAL
We love supporting, and connecting with amazing brands like Rubies in the Rubble because we share the same vision of a more sustainable future. Their tasty products will be in our awesome goodie bags (worth over £30) that all ticket holders will receive at Vevolution Festival 2018. Have you secured your tickets yet? Book them here.