Name: Phoebe Stonier
Job title: Brand & marketing associate
Company & location: GrowUp Farms in Sandwich, Kent
Education: Event management at Canterbury Christ Church University
As a child, what did you want to be when you grew up? I dreamt of becoming a West End dancer, inspired by my mum who was a dance teacher.
Why did you decide to go for a career in food & drink? I am a massive foodie! So that was the initial inspiration for looking into a career in food and drink, and GrowUp Farms’ vision of being an innovative and pioneering vertical farm attracted me.
“This is the future of food and something I am really interested in”
The highly controlled indoor environment the team have built, using state-of-the-art technology to create the perfect Mediterranean spring climate 365 days a year to grow salad leaves, is going to play a key role in helping the UK to become self-sufficient in growing salad and scaling back our reliance on overseas imports.
It means salad is now grown in the UK all year round and two brands – Fresh Leaf Co and Unbeleafable – are now available to buy in Iceland and Tesco respectively. This is the future of food and something I am really interested in.
Explain your job to us in a sentence (or two): My job is a dynamic mix of tasks, ranging from designing marketing materials and packaging, handling social media accounts to organising the Christmas party.
What does a typical day look like for you? Every day is unique with a huge variety of different tasks, including going inside the farm itself to get salad samples, liaising with our creative agencies, designing adverts for our latest brand Unbeleafable, copywriting and organising internal and external events.
Tell us how you went about applying for your job: Getting hired at GrowUp Farms involved three interviews, with the final stage requiring a presentation to the founder, Kate Hofman, where I had to outline strategies for a successful product launch and marketing campaigns.
It was very daunting, and I put everything I had into the last interview. Thankfully, it paid off!
What’s the best part about working for a food & drink company? Being a part of a brand and concept I truly believe in.
And what’s the biggest misconception people have about working in food and drink? People often think it’s easy, as everyone needs food and drink, but we have to work hard to make a big impact in order to stand out from the crowd – which we are really achieving now.
What advice would you give to other young people looking to get into the food & drink industry? Gain diverse experiences, network, and stay passionate about the field.
What’s your ultimate career dream? Becoming a brand manager really appeals to me!