The Fix + Co.
Pure Green has always been an avid supporter of small business, especially when it's a business that works so hard to create special products that benefit the mind, body, and spirit. We were delighted to meet Adrianna Stadnyk and Tamara Spinatsch, two young and motivated women building a health-based and passion-driven business in Toronto. THE FIX + CO, a raw, cold-pressed juice bar and catering service, was born of a big dream and a strong work ethic, and we're delighted to share a bit of their passion here on Pure Green!
LAUNCHING A RAW, COLD-PRESSED JUICE BAR SOUNDS LIKE NO EASY FEAT. WHAT WAS THE INSPIRATION FOR EMBARKING ON THIS ENTREPRENEURIAL ENDEAVOUR?
We talked about opening up a juicery about five years ago, but we were too young and inexperienced to go ahead with the idea. So what we would do instead is pull out the juicer in our kitchen and start experimenting with different fruits and vegetables, create different blends and recipes, then get our friends and family to taste-test them. Over the next couple of years, we continued to talk about the idea of starting a business together, but it wasn't until we were asked to serve juice at our friend's pop-up shop event that we would test this out as a real business. Our juices were well received and we sold everything we produced. We got great reviews and were asked to do other events, then started doing taste-testing around the city. This led to being asked to deliver our juices to people's homes and offices. Eventually this took over much of our time and turned into a full-time operation. But the real inspiration came from losing close family members to cancer. We have always made it our goal to live as healthy as possible, to learn about different ways too keep us healthy, and then spread that knowledge to our community, family and friends. Obviously nutrition and eating well is a big piece of the puzzle. Luckily, the nutrition/cooking part is what we are most passionate about.
Tamara pictured on left, Adrianna on right.
WITH JUICING BECOMING A MAJOR HEALTH PRACTICE AND MANY JUICE BARS POPPING UP THROUGHOUT THE CITY, CAN YOU EXPLAIN A LITTLE ABOUT WHAT MAKES YOU DIFFERENT? WHAT DO YOU WANT CUSTOMERS TO TAKE AWAY FROM THE FIX + CO THAT THEY CAN'T GET ANYWHERE ELSE?
It's funny how our dream of opening up a shop five years ago has now become a dream for many others. But there is good reason for that! Juicing is such a valuable tool that can be used to improve anyone's diet, so it is great to see this movement happening in the city.
What sets us apart is the quality of our juice and the fact that everything is made in small batches. We don't water down our juices, we use organic and local produce, and everything is made with 110% love. We also produce everything on site, which means that we juice fresh batches throughout the day as soon as we get low on something. People can look into our kitchen and see exactly how we make their juice. We are very transparent about the process and ingredients we use. Because our juices are made in smaller batches right now, we can also customize juices for our clients. Many of us have sensitivities or allergies to something. We can tweak recipes to make it work for you. We also think that people love the experience they get when in our shop. They love seeing the owners juicing, running the shop, getting involved, and getting their hands dirty.
GIVE YOUR TOP THREE REASONS TO CONSUME COLD-PRESSED, RAW JUICES.
- It tastes good. The fact that a magical blend of fruit and veggies could taste so satisfying when mixed together is amazing. The flavours you get from raw juice is unlike anything else.
- The nutrients are super easy to absorb. Because a lot of the insoluble fiber is extracted, the vitamins, minerals, and enzymes are very easy for you to absorb which is great for those with a compromised immunity or digestion, or for those who are looking to increase their intake of micronutrients.
- It's a quick and easy way to increase your daily intake of soluble fiber, vitamins, minerals, fruit, veggies, and more. We are all busy people and there's a lot of things to accomplish in a day. The biggest challenge is to fuel yourself right and eat well while on the go. Juicing is probably one of the best ways to get in the good stuff when in a jam.
ADRIANNA, AS A HOLISTIC NUTRITIONIST, WHAT ARE THE MAIN HEALTH BENEFITS YOU CAN EXPECT WITH REGULAR CONSUMPTION OF RAW, COLD-PRESSED JUICE?
Once you start, it's hard to stop. Juicing becomes a regular part of your lifestyle, and once it is you begin to see a lot of benefits. Glowing skin, healthier hair, better digestion, less bloating, energy improvement, a decrease in sugar cravings, better sleep, weight loss, and better mood. You feel more vibrant, focused, and alive.
HOW DID YOUR EXPERTISE IN HOLISTIC NUTRITION INFORM THE PROCESS OF CREATING UNIQUE BLENDS AND OFFERINGS AT THE FIX + CO?
Knowing the benefits of each vegetable and fruit has helped us to create blends for different needs. Some juices are more useful for detoxification, while others may be more useful for pre- or post-workout, or fighting flus and colds. Having that level of expertise has helped us make blends with purpose behind them. The next step is to make these blends taste delicious, because no one wants to drink an overly sour or bitter juice. It has to have a nice balance of health benefits and satisfying flavour.
SPEAKING OF NUTRITION, YOUR MENU ISN'T COMPRISED OF ONLY JUICES—YOU ALSO OFFER DELICIOUS SALADS AND SOUPS! WHY DID YOU FEEL THESE WERE IMPORTANT ADDITIONS? WHAT ARE SOME CUSTOMER FAVOURITES?
Juicing is only one piece of optimal nutrition. If all you have is one green juice a day and eat junk food the rest, you are still going to feel like crap (even though one green juice a day is better than no juice). We wanted to provide our clients with more options because it gives them the message that you can eat well while on the go. There are options out there. But also, some people don't want just juice. They want to go to a place where they can conveniently pick up a couple of things to set themselves on the right track for the whole day or week.
CAN YOU SHARE A BIT ABOUT YOUR VARIOUS CLEANSING PROGRAMS? WHY SHOULD SOMEONE WHO HAS NEVER UNDERGONE A CLEANSE CONSIDER ONE?
We have four different cleanse kits to choose from, three of which are juices only, and one that is a combo of juice, soup, and salad. Different kits are fit for different needs, experience levels, and comfort levels. We have kits with a variation of our sweeter juices, and have kits with all green juices. The kit that is very popular right now is our Body Reset Kit, which includes the juices, soup, and salad. This option is great for those who are beginners, who are active, or just need a lighter detox option. It is definitely a less intimidating option. The true juice cleanses are great for those who would like to jump-start a new health goal, would like to give their body and digestion a break, or have a certain health issue they would like to work on. Anyone can do a juice cleanse, but we suggest coming in and having a talk with the in-house nutritionist (me!) to figure out which option would be best for them. That way we can determine the length of time and which kit to go with.
WHAT IS YOUR BEST ADVICE ON HOW TO BEST TAKE ADVANTAGE OF (AND SUCCESSFULLY COMPLETE) A JUICE CLEANSE?
There are a few tips to make your juice cleanse a successful one. First, have a quick consult with the in-house nutritionist to determine what best suits your needs. Second, prep your body by eating lighter and increasing water intake a few days before. Third, while on a juice cleanse/detox, take it easy. Decrease your activity level, relax, and rest as much as possible. A couple of other tips is to keep drinking that water throughout the day and not to be so hard on yourself. Sometimes people do a juice cleanse and they feel absolutely horrible. If this is the case, we always tell people to notify us so that we can modify by adding a soup, smoothie, or salad. Believe it or not, juice cleanses can be too stressful for some people's system and can do more harm than good. So keep an eye on your symptoms. Anything past hunger and fatigue should be brought to our attention.
HOW DO YOU SOLVE THE CHALLENGE OF FINDING RELATIVELY LOCAL AND ORGANIC PRODUCE DURING THE GROWING OFF-SEASON? WHAT ABOUT IN PRIME GROWING SEASON?
It is very hard for us to find local AND organic as a smaller operation during the off-season. But, we do our best and work with a few local businesses that have their own organic farms. During prime growing season, there is very little issue with finding local AND organic. That is the nature of the beast living in a climate with colder seasons. What we do is constantly keep our eye open for different produce options. We often make "seasonal" recipes to maximize the use of seasonal produce, but seasonal doesn't always mean local if your goal is to use organic.
SINCE WE'RE TALKING ABOUT SEASONS, WE'RE IN THE MIDST OF A BIG SEASONAL CHANGE RIGHT NOW. I ALWAYS FIND THE TRANSITION FROM WINTER TO SPRING A LITTLE ROCKY—THE COLD WINTER MONTHS LEAVE ME FEELING A LITTLE DRY AND ENERGETICALLY DEPLETED. DO YOU HAVE ANY ADVICE FOR FOODS OR JUICES TO CONSUME DURING THIS TIME TO HELP TRANSITION YOUR BODY?
Definitely. One way is to try and consume as much local and seasonal fruits and veggies as possible, since the options usually reflect nutritional needs at that specific time of year. You can always find a chart on seasonal produce in Ontario on the internet. As we get into warmer months, increase your water or fluid intake by having a juice, lemon water, or warm teas (if you are feeling a chill coming on). A juice that we are really loving right now that may help energy slumps is our green juice called The Remedy with kale, parsley, cucumber, celery, ginger, pear, and lime. Since winter is often the time we eat a lot of heavier and cooked meals, you can start transitioning to lighter meals that are lightly cooked or raw, like soups, salads, or smoothies—those are all great ways of increasing your intake of fruits and vegetables and are lighter options.
HOW DO YOU EACH PRACTICE SELF-CARE OUTSIDE OF JUICING?
Outside of juicing we eat plant-based, which means we base our diet around eating as much vegetables, fruits, and foods that do not come from animal sources. This ensures that we eat as whole and clean as possible. It also helps us to keep our energy levels up. We have both learned that eating certain foods that come from animals make us feel heavy, bloated, tired, or just unwell. The trick is to find what works for you. We also try to stay active by working out, going for runs, playing golf, or other sports. One way Tamara schedules in physical activity is running with the Food Runners run group every Wednesday morning. Adrianna, on the other hand, has picked up golfing and hits the range 2-3 times a week until golf season picks up.
WHAT ARE YOUR FUTURE HOPES AND DREAMS FOR THE FIX + CO?
Our future hopes and dreams are to expand on our food options (because we love to cook), to open a second or third location in the next couple of years, and to increase our business by running a successful catering/delivery company as well as a store-front. We have big plans!
BONUS: Get a Vegan Chocolate Avocado smoothie bowl recipe courtesy of Adrianna & Tamara!
LEARN MORE: thefixandco.com
CONTRIBUTORS & CREDITS:
LAUREN KOLYN, Photography: Lauren is a lifestyle and editorial photographer based in Montréal and Toronto, Canada. With a documentary approach to her photography, Lauren is a visual storyteller with a unique ability to capture the essence of the moment. Drawing much of her artistic inspiration from the natural environment, Lauren's photographic work explores the modest yet powerful beauty of her surroundings. She is also currently part of the Pure Green editorial team. View her work, follow her on Instagram.