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Candy makes everyone happy. No one understands that better than Sarah Segal, the founder and president of Squish Candy, a brand of artisanal, gourmet confections with decadent and fruity flavours. In other words, they’re not your everyday, run-of-the-mill kind of gummies.
After stepping away from her role as Head of Product Development and Innovation at David’s Tea, Segal launched Squish in 2014 in Montreal. With its fun packages and flavours, like vegan prosecco bears and cold brew bolts, this whimsical candy brand offers a sweeter taste of life.
CEO and Founder of Evio, Brandi Leifso sat down with Sarah, and here’s what she had to say..
Brandi Leifso: Hey Sarah! As someone with a serious sweet tooth, I’m grateful for the introduction of Squish Candy into my diet. Why did you choose candy as your next business venture?
Sarah Segal: I always loved good candy. Growing up, I got to taste gummies in Europe and knew they were in a different league than what I could find here at the depanneur or candy shop. I love the care and craftsmanship that goes into making gourmet gummies and candy, and I get really excited about unique flavours
BL: Like Evio Beauty, Squish is infused with natural flavours. What led you to the decision to make things more natural (and vegan)?
SS: If you are like me and eat organic and healthy food, there is no reason your gummies should be filled with junk! Vegan candy was a discovery to me and the response to our push into this category has raised my awareness of the vegan movement in general. I am happy that the world is moving towards more plant-based options. It is better for everyone.
BL: What do you think are the biggest challenges for female entrepreneurs?
SS: I think female entrepreneurs face a lot of the same financial obstacles to growing their business as their male counterparts. I don’t think about the fact that I am female except in certain meetings where it is clear the other party prefers a male figure at the table to ensure that the negotiation is “serious”. A challenge I find for a woman in business is that other women and people, in general, tend to be more critical than they would be of a male counterpart.
BL: When you get discouraged, what picks you up?
SS: Showing up at work [gives me] a jolt of energy. I love who I work with. It is a tough world out there but if your team is kind, inspiring, and always willing to help, it leaves me feeling like I can do anything.
BL: Since you’re in the business of custom blends, what’s your favourite food to eat?
SS: My favourite food is spicy fried chicken!
BL: How do you explain what you do to your friends?
SS: I think they understand that everyone has a relationship with candy. The hardest part is describing that we do everything from creating the recipes to building our own stores and running our own e-commerce. It takes a lot of love and passion from a great team to make it all happen.