From the Source: Jennifer of Pop Queen
Come by the store on Tuesday, June 21 from 10:30 am - 6pm to celebrate the beginning of summer with popsicles by POP QUEEN.
5 Q's with Pop Queen
We asked Jennifer from Pop Queen 5 questions about how she started her business so read on to find out more about Jennifer and her journey to creating Pop Queen.
1. How did you become the Pop Queen?
The journey of Pop Queen all started with a dream. Back then, I was living in NY, pursuing a career as a model. I thought I would always work in fashion, as I had since I was a young girl.
Life was good; I made great money and I was pursuing the career of my dreams. I didn’t think I would ever want anything more in life until I had the dream where I had Pop Queen.
In my dream, I had the platform to inspire positive change in both the environment and humanity. I was happy, fulfilled, and producing one of my favorite things in the world: ice cream! I had the same dream every night for a month straight until I made the conscious decision to leave NY and move to Miami to start Pop Queen.
I knew nothing about food other than the fact that I loved eating it. I had never heard the words “supply chain” or terms like “production flow”. None of this appealed to me. I was entering into a new world blindly.
I learned. I failed. I struggled. I worked tirelessly. I cried. I laughed. I celebrated the small victories. I learned some more. I failed again and again and again. I still fail sometimes.
I missed birthdays, holidays, family gatherings, and funerals. I lost my father. I lost friendships. I lost my partner. I lost my dogs. I lost my cat. A few times, I thought I was losing my mind.
I gained perspective, experience, and an invaluable amount of knowledge. I learned how to operate a business firsthand. I made new friends who understood this path.
They say entrepreneurship is a lonely path. I agree, but I wouldn’t say I have ever felt alone. I fight this battle for everyone, and I very much feel we’re all in it together.
At Pop Queen, we make frozen desserts sweetened with honey. We partner with organizations who work with our future. Our mission is to set up children for dietary success and to prevent dietary illness. Pop Queen is a green company; we use biodegradable packaging/labels and focus on sustainable production. We also compost our unused plant matter. We spread awareness of honeybees, and I am a beekeeper myself. (I actually have a queen honey bee tattooed above my left elbow because I love the bees so much!)
I wanted to create the most ethical, practical, healthy, and delicious product I could make. That is what we do at Pop Queen. There is an endless amount of love, thought, and effort that goes into our products. I hope you enjoy eating our products as much as I have enjoyed making them.
2. What is the most interesting part of being a small business to you?
I think the most interesting thing about being a small business is getting to know all the other hustlers who are in your field. I’ve had the pleasure of connecting with some of the most unique and interesting people that I’ll ever meet, all of which are entrepreneurs. We come from all walks of life and I think our greatest strength is that we all produce something with the goal of making everybody’s life easier. We all have this in common, and we are all so passionate about it. It’s refreshing to be around so many people who see the world through this lens.
Another interesting thing - you never stop being consumed by your business. Every entrepreneur will understand what I mean - you can be out on an intimate dinner date and mid conversation, out of nowhere you'll be hit with a new idea that you have to write down to make your business better. It often comes off as rude because it's very interruptive, but it is necessary. Our minds are always working, even when we sleep. Just the other day I came up with an entirely new wholesaling structure that will streamline our ability to produce larger volumes; while I was having dinner with one of my friends. They were like, "Do you ever stop?!" I can't really explain it, but that is how our minds work.
3. What do you find the most rewarding?
The most rewarding thing for me is connecting with people who share the same food intolerances and don't get to enjoy frozen desserts - I think this was what made me subconsciously start the company. I am sensitive to so many food groups and cannot enjoy a lot of ice-cream type desserts. Because our products are free of: refined-sugar, gluten, dairy, and nuts, we are able to reach a lot of people who cannot consume these food groups. It is humbling to offer them something that they can enjoy, that they previously couldn't.
4. What's your earliest popsicle memory?
In the summers, when I was a young girl, we would get those otter pops in the plastic sleeves and suck all the juice out. My favorite flavor was green, whatever 'green' was supposed to be. I remember letting them melt down to liquid and then drinking it all in. We would eat all our favorites first, saving the purple and orange for last because we didn't like them.
5. Future Plans?
In the future, we are going to be introducing packs of 4 to local grocery stores. I am projecting this to be in the next year. There are a lot of moving parts involved, but our long term goal is to produce on a very large scale so we can introduce healthy alternatives to everybody who can benefit from them.
1. Your Favorite Flavor? Most definitely, passionfruit!
2. Best Place to Enjoy a Pop in Miami? In the hammock in my backyard, on a hot summer day.
3. Wildest Flavor Suggestion someone has sent you? Great question - I would say canistel - which we made and was one of the yummiest things I have ever tried in my life. It tasted like pumpkin pie!
Source offers a selection of the highest-quality produce, goods and more sourced local, organic, ethical, sustainable and as regenerative as possible. From the farm box to the market, all of our products are for and from the earth. We are committed to sustainable practices for an invested connected community, in an authentic space that will endure.
Source is open Monday through Friday, 10:30am - 6:00pm, with in store and online shopping available. Visit us at 275 Alhambra Circle, Coral Gables, FL 33134 to see all that Source has to offer.