How It All Began
The inspiration for OmieBox came from Nancy’s son Brad, who never ate more than a few bites of lunch during his first year of preschool. Noticing he was more likely to eat his favorite hot foods (spaghetti, chicken soup), Nancy searched high and low for something that could store hot entrees as well as cold fruits and vegetables. Frustrated at the lack of choices, she decided to take matters into her own hands and create a new kind of lunch system that can help kids eat better and be healthier.
P.S. Brad now enjoys and finishes (most of the time) his OmieBox hot lunches.
Our Mission Is To Help Kids Eat Healthier
“Only 11% of lunches brought from home contain a vegetable, and only 25% of lunches met three out of five National School Lunch Program standards.” -- Journal of the American Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics.
Let’s face it - packing lunch is HARD. It’s hard to know what kids will actually eat, and sometimes it’s easier to throw in a fruit roll-up (hey it’s made of fruit, right?) so they’ll eat something. But it really does matter what kids eat for lunch. Kids get between one-third to one-half of their daily calories at lunch, so they gotta fill up on the good stuff. Getting the right nutrition at lunch has so many positive benefits! Concentration, memory and problem solving function at their peak, so kids can be their best selves. Longer term, having the right nutrition improves immunity and resistance to colds/flu, so kids miss fewer days at school.
Created With Love By Two Parents
Nancy and Robin share a passion for helping kids be their healthiest selves. Although they come from opposite sides of the world, one thing they both deeply believe in is the importance of good food in raising healthy kids.
Nancy Yen, Founder/CEO
Nancy believes in challenging conventional wisdom. From questioning teachers' lesson plans as a child to new product innovation as an adult, Nancy has always pushed the boundaries when the status quo just isn't good enough.
Nancy has 20+ years of experience bringing new products to market. Nancy holds a MBA from Stanford Business School and a BA from Williams College.
Robin Bigio, Creative Director
Robin’s specialty is making ideas come to life. Give Robin a stack of foam core and an Exacto knife, and he can whip up 6 prototypes to solve a problem in less than 1 hour. An unrelenting perfectionist, Robin’s strives to create products that make a meaningful difference in people’s lives.
Robin has a BA in Product Design at Central Saint Martins College of Art and Design in London, and spent 9 years at IDEO as a senior designer and project lead.
OmieBox Journey: From Idea To Reality
It all started with understanding how parents pack lunch and why they were frustrated. We went to dozens of homes to watch parents pack lunch.Not only was it super interesting to get a glimpse into different ways familie tackle lunch making, it also gave us a lot of ideas for creating OmieBox.
Then we started prototyping! The first prototypes were made of foam core but that didn’t stop us from asking parents to pack lunch in them! Feedback is so important so we always made sure kids and parents tested each of our key features.
On July 7, 2014 we launched our Kickstarter campaign. Thanks to the support of 2,053 backers, we raised $129,164 which paid for our first production!
We found a small factory in Southern China that made high quality housewares and we kicked off production for the first batch in June 2014. Here’s a photo of Nancy and the China team right before the finished goods were loaded on the container!
Because There's More To Lunch
“I want him to open up & see this fun lunch Mom packed – that thought went into it and Mom knows everything he likes.” -- Jill, mom of 2
In the year of observation and experimentation, we learned a lot about the painstaking efforts parents take to create healthy lunches for their kids. What we realized was that lunch isn’t just nourishment for their growing bodies – it’s also nourishment for their soul. When a child opens up a lunchbox filled with his favorite foods, what he or she feels is love.