Friday 5 June 2009

The Fruit Box story and an introduction to me!

The Fruit Box and me in a Leeds office

The idea for The Fruit Box came to me while I was working in a business last year a few months after graduating from university. Having been a (reasonably) active student participating in several sports I was finding the adjustment to the office lifestyle a little difficult. The long hours spent in the office chair and the tearoom snacks were taking their toll! I decided I had to do something about my waning health so a colleague and I started buying fruit for the office every Monday from the city centre supermarket. We were a little disappointed by what we got for our money and on top of that we were exhausted by the time we returned to the office! Never the less everyone loved having fresh fruit in the office.

After a bit of research I discovered the success of specialist office fruit suppliers in Australia and Norway. In these countries employers would give their staff free fruit as a visible employee wellbeing benefit. I decided that this business could be a success here in Leeds.

The most important aspect in developing the idea was finding a quality supply of fresh fruit that could be provided to businesses on a cost effective basis. This is where I had a chance meeting with Richard Thompson of the famous Yorkshire Produce Centre. When I tasted that first juicy apple I knew that the workplaces of Leeds would be as hooked as I was!

After the assistance of The Princes Trust and Leeds Metropolitan University I decided it was time to get drastic and quit my job and start The Fruit Box. This allowed me to concentrate 100% on developing a service to provide the highest quality fruit to offices in Leeds. The Fruit Box was off the ground.

The Fruit Box business model has been built on a foundation of friendly and reliable customer service. I’m 100% committed to making The Fruit Box experience as rewarding and hassle free as possible for businesses. I source only the highest quality and freshest produce for my customers.

Over the coming months I will be working hard to develop The Fruit Box’s CSR strategy. At the moment I donate the fruit which has not quite made the stringent quality checks to a local homeless charity called Emmaus. The charity helps homeless people in Leeds and the surrounding area to help themselves by providing a home and work in a supportive environment. It’s a great charity and they really do a great job in giving people a chance to support themselves. Visit them here for further information on this great charity.

The Fruit Box provides employers with Wellbeing in a box - a cost effective way to boost employee wellbeing and keep staff performing at their best.

I hope you enjoy eating Leeds’ finest fruit.

Jonathan Russell
The Fruit Box founder

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