Sugar Free Solutions
Sugar Free Solutions began because Melinda Mackay wanted to make sure her son, newly diagnosed with type 1 diabetes could have cake at his next birthday.
She began experimenting with sugar-free cakes, and using a natural plant-based sweetener. When word of her creations began to spread, she realised the scope of the market for them.
Soon, overseas interest increased and she began exploring exporting her sugar-free mixes to countries with a high level of diabetes.
Today, Sugar Free Solutions is exporting sugar-free cake and muffin mixes to the Middle East and Asia.
NSW Government assistance
However, as a small one-woman business Ms Mackay did not have the funds to advertise abroad. The NSW Government and Austrade were able to assist by exhibiting her products on the NSW-supported stand at the Gulfood Food Expo in Dubai.
Gulfood is the largest annual food trade show in the world and is attended by more than 90,000 buyers from 160 countries. Sugar Free Solutions was one of 6,000 exhibitors at Gulfood 2016, exhibiting on the Food Innovation Australia Limited (FIAL) stand of NSW products.
Since the Gulfood trade show, Sugar Free Solutions has expanded their exports to Qatar and Philippines. The sugar-free products are halal and kosher certified, and with the rising rate of diabetes in the Middle East, there is plenty of demand for her products.
Sugar Free Solutions cake mixes contain half the carbohydrates of regular cakes and do not cause the same blood sugar spike.
One of the key reasons for Ms Mackay’s success was commitment to exporting, market research, implementing good international marketing strategies, attending the right tradeshows and being introduced to the right people.