Good Food Maldives — offering healthier choices

A relatively new venture is fast becoming the go-to store for quality organic, and natural, foods.

MFR Image | Aishath Arsha, Business Director at  Good Food Maldives

MFR Image | Aishath Arsha, Business Director at Good Food Maldives

Healthy eating not only contributes to an overall sense of wellbeing but also helps prevent a number of health conditions including heart disease, high blood pressure, diabetes, and asthma. It is also particularly important for cognitive development and healthy growth for children and young people.

Modern lifestyles, and the effects of the pandemic, have opened the eyes of many Maldivians towards adopting healthier eating routines. However, for decades, organic food supplies and healthy products have been quite literally and economically out of reach.

Good Food Maldives (GFM) was established with the aim of providing organic and natural grocery products sourced from around the world. To meet the high demand for their products, GFM recently opened their shop front at the corner of Maaveyo Magu adjacent to Majeedhee Magu. Customers can now visit the store and choose from a variety of healthy options.

MFR sat down with Business Director, Aishath Arsha for an insight into GFM

Maldives Financial Review: How did GFM start?

Aishath Arsha: Good Food Maldives first started as an online delivery store in January 2020. Initially, we were taking orders on our website and through social media. Our intention was to introduce organic and gluten free product lines to Maldives. Organic foods do not contain synthetic pesticides found in conventional agriculture. Organically grown food have higher amounts of nutrition required for our body. It is our aim to find healthy and delicious food from all over the world to provide our customers with clean and ethical food in Maldives. 

MFR: What services do you provide?

Arsha: At the moment, our products are sold from our retail shop and through our online platforms. A variety of products are showcased in our retail shop for customers to choose from and have a better shopping experience. We provide assistance and information of all products to our in store customers, so they can make informed purchases based on their health preferences.

We have also been doing wholesale to some resorts and retail outlets as well. Since we carry exclusive organic and gluten free product lines, many contact us when they need to find gluten free products.

MFR: What are some of your most popular products?

Arsha: Our products have been a great hit in our niche market. Products such as gluten free flour, gluten free pasta, gluten free snacks, superfood powders, honey and spreads, sugars and syrups and super seeds are the most commonly bought items. Many people choose gluten free products when choosing pasta and whole wheat products. Research shows that, gluten free options are healthier as it promotes easier digestion and healthy bowel movements. Although whole wheat offers some nutritional benefits, gluten free products promotes weight loss and overall health improvements. 

Good Food Maldives / MFR Image

Superfood powders and seeds are made with ingredients to provide a nutritional boost in your diet. These can be used to make smoothies and added to your daily breakfast granola or cereals. Our organic honey and spreads such as nut butter and jams are fully natural products with no added sugars and preservatives. They are as flavorful and delicious as non-organic spreads, but comes with a lot more benefits. 

MFR: Do you do ongoing promotions?

Arsha: Yes, we do have some discounts currently in store. Buy one get one free for granola products, discounts on organic quinoa cereal flakes, cashew butter smooth, plum and ginger jam, black sesame rice crackers, organic roasted hazelnuts etc.  

MFR: How has the feedback been from customers?

Arsha: All feedback we have received has been incredibly positive. Customers do associate Good Food Maldives with organic, gluten free, and vegan product lines. Usually, parents with small kids having certain food allergies look for our products. We also have a number of repeat customers who regularly buy products from us. 

"A premium collection of food that is rare to find here. Very convenient online shopping and quick delivery".
Customer testimonial

MFR: How do you plan on adapting to a lockdown and long curfew hours?

Arsha: At the moment, we close our shops and online deliveries by 1600 hrs. As long as there is no full lockdown we will be doing our deliveries during non-curfew hours. Should there be any lockdown, we will be doing deliveries through permit.

MFR: How do you reach your regional customers?

Arsha: When online orders come in from resorts and island-based customers, they let us know the transfer or ferry details. We deliver the product orders to boats and keep them informed. Our goal is to reach as many customers as possible through the current available transfer methods. 

MFR: What are the major challenges you currently face?

Arsha: Due to pandemic related restrictions in other countries as well as ours, there has been a lot of delay in sea and air freight services.  As world supply chains have been disrupted, suppliers have also had difficulties in obtaining raw materials as well. One of the major challenges is buying USD and the increase in freight costs. It has been difficult to keep the prices down due to these factors. We wish to provide products at an affordable price so that many can switch to healthier options. 

Good Food Maldives products, MFR Image

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