Things are getting brighter every day at OM Juicery — both inside and out.
An eye-catching mural now adorns the outside of the kitchen premises on Elliott Street.
The artwork was created by six students from Berkeley Institute and it has given the business a happy, cheerful appearance.
And that happy vibe quite literally extends inside, where the newest staff member is Happy Lindsay. She is a sous chef, assisting with the preparation of cold-pressed juices and smoothies and a new range of meals in a bowl.
The core team of Preston James, the business owner, and chef James Mitchell, are also smiling. They have reason to, because the organic juice enterprise has enjoyed a healthy level of growth since setting up its working kitchen almost a year ago.
OM Juicery has rolled out a new subscription service that offers not only its established line of cold-pressed juices, but also the option of bowls of healthy food. There is a bean bowl, a garden salad bowl, and for those willing to pop by and collect there is a breakfast bowl.
Juices and the salad and bean bowls can be delivered to customers at home or their workplace.
OM Juicery’s Elliott Street premises is a working kitchen, not a shop. It is where the team prepare juices and dishes before delivering orders directly to clients across Hamilton and beyond.
The customer base has grown through word-of-mouth and recommendations. The business distinguishes itself from others by using a cold-pressed method for its juices, applying 200 pounds of pressure to the ingredients to squeeze out as much of the goodness — the enzymes, nutrients and flavour — as possible.
Each bottle contains 1.5lbs of food, and the pricing reflects this. Customers are able to enjoy the benefits of the nutritional blends without having to do any of the time-consuming preparation.
The juices and bowls are created from as much locally and organically sourced produce as possible. Ingredients are brought in from further afield when there is no local alternative.
Explaining what prompted the move to offering bowls of fresh food alongside the juices, Mr James said: “We had a lot of requests from people who want to do half-days [of juicing] and have some food.”
He said it was about listening to what customers are saying, and responding to their requests. The juice and bowl orders can be designed for families or individuals.
“People sign up and have it delivered to wherever they need it to be,” said Mr James.
And he is pleased to see children being introduced to healthier food choices. He would like to see the subscription service extended into schools.
The group of Berkeley students who created the mural on the outside wall of the premises were kept refreshed with some of the OM Juicery’s products. They gave the juices the thumbs up, said Mr James.
The students were Kaitlyn Jeffrey, Tamoghna Sengupta, Larussy Romero, Deja Harvey, Kojo Darrell and Jean-Pierre Lucas, who worked closely with Mr James to design the mural before it was created by the art students. Additional resources for the mural were provided by Jeffery Trott of Jeff’s Painting Services, and Pembroke Paint Company.
The students fitted in the time to do the mural painting around their graduation year studies. There were opportunities for shared conversations about the benefits of a healthy diet, and also aspects of running a business.
That level of social interaction extends to the neighbourhood. OM Juicery has connected with locals who have given the business support and, Mr James believes, taken encouragement from seeing a small enterprise thrive.
“They see people who are the same age as them and who are doing something positive. They are not being judged and we have open conversations. They give us a lot of support.”
Mr James added: “I love this location for what it offers. We get to do our preparation and do our deliveries.”
While looking ahead at possible expansion to a second location, he said the Elliot Street premises will remain OM Juicery’s working kitchen base.