Lehigh Valley native launches health food marketplace online
- An online health food marketplace was recently launched by a Lehigh Valley native
- Jessica Young was a chef in New York City, but returned to Allentown, where she grew up, to start Bubble Goods
- The online retailer sells health food from smaller companies
ALLENTOWN, Pa. — A Lehigh Valley native is launching a website that sells health food products from smaller, often local producers.
Bubble Goods is being called the Etsy of health food — comparing it with the e-commerce company for handmade or vintage items and craft supplies.
“I would say [Bubble Goods is] more comparable to your local natural food store or farmer's market or like regional Whole Foods, if they've even approached that level."Jessica Young, Bubble Goods Chief Executive Officer
"Most of the brands that you'll find on Bubble Goods are very much at a local level,” said Bubble Goods Chief Executive Officer Jessica Young, of Allentown.
“I would say more comparable to your local natural food store or farmer's market or like regional Whole Foods, if they've even approached that level."
Young was a New York City chef who had cooked for big names, such as Robert De Niro and Scarlet Johansson.
She said she decided to come back to the Valley after feeling burned out, and try something new in the food industry.
So, she said, she started the online food marketplace to give people in the health food space more variety.
"Compared to Amazon, it's a lot more curated of a selection," she said. "A lot of the food brands that you'll see would never be a fit for Amazon. They're too small. They don't know how to show up in rank."
'Caviar down to potato chips'
Young said they have more than 1,000 smaller, often start-up, food companies listed and selling on the platform, and the products vary in price.
"All the way from caviar down to potato chips," she said. "We have a lot of emerging brands, we have a great under $10 and under $15 section.
"We're always running different sales because we really want people to try these different brands. So it totally varies based on category and brand.”
“We want to be driving sales and growth to customers and putting customers in touch with better quality food products."Jessica Young, Bubble Goods Chief Executive Officer
Young said Bubble Goods has a rigorous screening process when determining if a product is a good fit. She said it doesn't accept products that contain refined sugars, dyes, gums or preservatives.
“We want to be driving sales and growth to customers and putting customers in touch with better quality food products," she said.
Young said she also was proud to say more than half of the companies listed are founded by women.
She said it has a wide variety of products from sellers in New York, but would like to add more Lehigh Valley-based companies to the list of sellers on the website.
Shoppers on the website can make their own grocery lists, similar to a Pinterest board, then share that list to earn points, similar to an Amazon storefront.