FEATURE16 May 2018

The right ingredients

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FMCG Features Impact People UK

Ambition, determination and resilience – entrepreneurs have a lot to learn from the traits embodied by the average two-year-old, according to Ella’s Kitchen founder Paul Lindley. By Katie McQuater


Starting a business is, in some ways, akin to becoming a parent – sleepless nights, learning new tricks and, sometimes, simply trusting your instinct. For Paul Lindley, that gut feeling – based on his experience as a parent – was the belief that baby food could be different: healthy, convenient for parents, and fun for children.

It was the starting point for Ella’s Kitchen, the range of puréed organic fruits and vegetables – named after Lindley’s first child – that would go on to become the top-selling baby food brand in the UK. His daughter Ella is now 18, but the brand is celebrating its 12th birthday on the day of our conversation, having come a long way from its early days in Lindley’s kitchen.

Though brands have more data at their fingertips now than when Ella’s Kitchen was born, Lindley is still an advocate of following your nose. “Big data is vital, and algorithms tell truths, but gut ...