This month we have multiple reasons to celebrate an amazing entrepreneur whose journey is a real inspiration to others showing that passion, perseverance and drive do reward. So for August, we are honouring Chef Kenzie Osborne who is also the recipient of the startGBC 2020 Student Entrepreneur of the Year Award!
It is with great pride and delight that we had the opportunity to present Kenzie with this recognition because she has constantly displayed personal growth during her entrepreneurial journey that she started during her academic endeavours at George Brown College.
As a result of her own complex life experiences with food, Kenzie has built not one but two businesses to help others gain a healthy relationship with the food they consume.
We had the good fortune to catch up with Kenzie and ask her a few questions.
Introduce yourself and your vision
Hello! My name is Kenzie Osborne and I am a graduate from the Culinary Nutrition Program at George Brown College. I am a passionate culinary nutritionist, health coach, and mental health advocate. My goal is to raise awareness about the importance of food and its effects on the mind, spirit and body.
I want to prove that food is so much more than what’s just on the plate. There are incredible stories to be told, experiences to be had, relationships to be built, and creativity to be displayed through each and every dish.
What’s your academic background?
I started my post-secondary education at Case Western Reserve University where I studied Biochemistry and metabolism. Unfortunately, during my time at CWRU, I developed a severe eating disorder and was forced to withdraw from school to focus on my illness. After completing recovery, I had re-established a healthy relationship with food and developed a passion for the culinary arts. I enrolled in the Culinary Nutrition Management Program at George Brown College where I completed my diploma in culinary arts. I plan to continue my education at George Brown College by taking part-time courses to further my culinary knowledge and further develop my skills.
What made you want to become an entrepreneur?
Since a young child, I have always been eager to innovate, create, and do something different. After suffering from an eating disorder, and falling victim to the negativity surrounding body image and food, I knew I wanted to make a difference. I had experienced the devastating effects of malnutrition, and I became determined to create a positive space around food, nutrition, and mental health. I began my journey by starting a blog (https://kenzieosborne.com) which was designed to highlight the importance of food, and shed light on incredible stories from chefs around the globe. I wanted to make a positive difference in the world of food and nutrition – and I was eager to be the one to start the change myself.
What is the purpose of your business?
I am a Co-founder of Dryzzle Media along with three other incredibly talented professionals. Our intention was to build a platform that teaches cooking in a current and engaging way. We wanted to highlight audio as the primary medium for the recipes, along with attached photos and written instructions. Each recipe is guided by a team of engaging and diverse experienced chefs and home cooks. Essentially, Dryzzle is a “cookbook” of engaging recipe podcasts. The best part? It’s all on your phone in one simple, easy-to-use app.
While creating the app, we realized that many current food media platforms fail to represent the food industry in a diverse manner – often highlighting one specific cuisine, or limiting them to one culture of chefs. As a byproduct, it became our mission to build a platform that highlights the incredible diversity of chefs and home cooks that is representative of the world we live in. The Dryzzle App shares the stories of chefs and home cooks from all walks of life in engaging podcast episodes. The platform allows home cooks the opportunity to have a “chef-in-your-ear” experience, as they listen to podcast episodes while they prepare their meals.
The app is convenient, easy to use, engaging, current, inclusive, and diverse. I am so excited to shed light on the culinary industry, teach home cooks the versatility of food, introduce the community to simple recipes and cooking tips, and highlight the incredible culinary stories that have yet to be told.
What successes have you enjoyed so far with building your company?
So far our company has seen great growth in a short period of time. As a group, we have learned how to efficiently work together to accomplish goals in a timely and effective manner. We have learned about each other’s strengths and weaknesses, and have grown exceptionally as a team. In my opinion, growing as a team and building a strong foundation is our greatest success thus far. Our combined efforts have allowed us to onboard nearly 10 incredible culinary hosts, reach over 1000 downloads, work with businesses in the GTA, and accomplish our pre-set IOS Apple Store launch date in July.
What is one piece of advice you would give to aspiring entrepreneurs?
Ask for help! There are so many aspects to creating a business – and you won’t be able to do it alone. Don’t be afraid to “take a leap of faith” and reach out to friends, family members, school/community resources, professors, or professionals in your industry. Take the time to speak with them, ask questions, and learn as much as you can. Starting a business is about continuously learning, growing, and improving. The more you know, the more you can achieve.
Website and Socials
Dryzzle Media Inc.
Behind the Plate with Chef Kenzie Osborne