In this recent chat, we spoke with rhino saving couple Nicky & Shannon French.
After a successful cafe and coffee venture, the pair have just launched a 100% natural vegan, gluten-free, and refined sugar-free bar!
We chatted with the pair about why they do what they do, what people should know about the rhino, and who inspires their journey.
We loved their story and encourage you all to check out the Kindness Bar Range.
So you’ve just launched Kindness Bar, how has the preparation and launch gone?
Did you guys have a background in food & beverage?
Kindness bar have been about a year in the making from concept to launch. So far the launch has been excellent considering the current climate with most café spaces, zoo’s and businesses being closed and not being to go out and access all the smaller stores we want to.
But online has been good and so far the online community has been really supportive. There is also major interest already from distributors keen to work with us.
We have been involved in the food and beverage industry for about 6 years opening a café in Melbourne and launching our Rhino Horn Coffee brand a few years ago which also supports in Rhino conservation.
What made you want to create a ‘bar’ in particular?
We are obsessed with healthy plant-based snacks to go with our coffee. We thought a nice healthy organic bar that supports animals would be a great idea to raise badly needed funds.
Tell us a little about the charity you work with and how you got involved
Shannon’s background is the Australian Army. After he served in East Timor he looked at ways to put his military service to good use. We set up programs in Timor such as building schools and funding water projects and education programs from the proceeds of sales to help the Timorese people.
We are both passionate animal lovers and have done a lot of travel in support of animal conservation in Africa and Borneo.
Shannon has been involved with the IAPF ( International anti-poaching foundation) raising funds, equipment and worked on the ground in training rangers and conducting anti-poaching patrols in southern Africa. We have also raised funds for Care for wild which looks after orphaned rhinos whose mothers have been victim to the rhino horn poaching crisis.
What don’t people know about this issue that they really should?
Rhinos are critically endangered due to loss of habitat and through poaching and the demand in their horn. Often fetching 300k on the black market. Even though it’s made out of the same substance as a fingernail. In Asia it’s thought to have medicinal properties. These organisations that stand in the way of extinction rely solely on funding and donations. Rhinos are a keystone species and when they are protected all other animals in the reserves are as well. Poachers will go to the greatest lengths to poach rhinos even setting up hundreds of indiscriminate snares for any wild animal to be captured and killed in a horrific manner.
Poaching of Rhino horn is the biggest problem currently around 1000 Rhinos are killed every year from poaching.
Our Choc hemp bar supports the IAPF and their efforts on the ground in fighting Rhino poaching in Africa.
What is your ultimate goal for the business? Where do you see it in 3 – 5 years?
So, we would love to be working globally with ethical partners to achieve a goal of animal conversation and healthy snacks.
We have more flavours ready to go for kindness bars ready to add to the selection soon, ideally, we would be able to grow the brand nationally and internationally also adding more categories that complement the bars.
We would like to promote Australia flavours into the bars and also increase sales to a point where the money can be making a huge difference on the ground not just in Africa but globally support the voiceless.
If you could get the bar into the hand of anyone in the world, who would it be and why?
Paul Watson, we have always been inspired by people who stick to who they really are and what they believe no matter what or how much opposition they get.
Who inspires your work / continues to inspire your work?
The people who work on the ground/ frontline of animal conservation are amazing! A lot of the time it is individuals who have given up their lives to save animals. Damien Mander and Phillip Wollen also care for wild animals in Africa really do keep us inspired to continue.
The product is a vegan bar, tell us a little about the health benefits of the Kindness Bar range?
It’s all organic ingredients which I think is really important for your health a lot of healthy ingredients that are not grown organically come from contaminated soil or sprayed with harmful chemicals.
It’s all-natural ingredients, refined sugar-free & gluten-free.
What new products can we expect to see this year?
We already have another two flavours of the bar almost ready to go to production with some special conservation partnerships in talks.
Who should we interview next?
Thank you so much Nicky & Shannon, what incredible work you and the IAPF are doing for these beautiful animals. We would love for everyone to go and support this great new product! To find out more visit them on Instagram HERE and support a wonderful brand.
To go straight to their online store, visit the link HERE!
To read about other incredible vegan stories just like this one from Shannon French of KINDNESS BAR, then visit our Vegan Chat page here for more!