The thoughts on having a soup business began from when I was 15, whilst visiting my Grandma in Penzance Cornwall.
My Grandma would always take me on days out around Cornwall when ever I came to stay. We visited a little soup café in St Ives. This was a little place where you could eat and soak up the arty environment which was right up my street! This was my first taster of Broccoli and Stilton soup and I can still remember how delicious it was!
At this point, my life had always been about painting and keeping fit. After this visit to Cornwall my life changed, I then discovered creative cooking! I started to mess around with herbs and spices, and putting different foods together. I remember my mum saying to me “Please don’t make another Cheese and Potato Bake”.
At the age of thirty, I had spent eight years working full time as a packaging designer. My creativity had come to a halt due to pressure and not being given a free reign on the design routes. I felt this was time to change and find something more challenging.
My self, my partner and my 6th month old baby moved abroad to Cyprus. This was every thing I could have dreamed of. The paint brushes were back out, the fitness was at its prime and most of all the fruit and veg was so cheap and fresh it was soup heaven!
Every thing you bought locally in Cyprus came in a huge bulk. You were looked at a bit strange if you only wanted five potatoes. It had to be a huge bag!
Meeting other British people was a perfect opportunity for me to use them as test dummies for my soup experiments. The response was always good, and often over dinner we would exchange recipes and talk about where to get produce from. The Ex pats in our region of Cyprus were older and mostly retired so they had years of cooking tips for me to soak up.
Whilst in Cyprus I opened Neo art gallery, this is in a room at the front of our house. The gallery worked well and became a spot for tourists visiting the village. This is still being maintained by some good friends and now being used for other artists to display their works.
Our child was getting older, and due to the village environment there was little socially for him. We struggled to find other children for him to play with, so we decided to return back to the UK. My partner asked me what are we going to do for work? I replied “There are three things I want to do when I get back. Open a healthy Soup business, become a Fitness Instructor, and Paint.”
September 2009 was the start of Soupy Loopy and Fitness Instructing,
2009 to present- working as a fitness Instructor and selling soup at local farmers markets.
2011 was the start of Soupy Loopy being sold at Reynolds Gym.
Christmas 2011, to launch the new range Christmas soup called ‘The 3 wise men’ – Roasted Parsnip, Caramelized Onion and Mustard seed.
As for the art , I now find myself painting pictures of vegetables!
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by Gemma Moss