In a regular new feature here at Tooting Daily PRSS, we’re going to be introducing some of Tooting’s great young entrepreneurs. And we start off by showcasing Troy Johnson and Aaron Felix, Ernest Bevin alumni who have recently launched Juici Jerk, bringing delicious Caribbean food to the local area.
Aaron and Troy, both 23, have been cooking since they were 13 years old, catering for friends and family events, birthday parties and BBQ’s. Their focus is on perfecting the jerk seasoning aspect of their food. “When people think about jerk, they usually just think about chicken, but jerk can be applied to many other cuisines and dishes”, says Troy. Such was the brilliant reaction to their food, that they were encouraged to turn it into a commercial enterprise and recently started to take their first steps on this journey.
Back in February of this year, they started cooking twice a week and tested promoting their food to friends and family initially via Snapchat. This helped them to understand the process and to gain valuable feedback that would help them to make Juici Jerk a viable business. They have now set up official Instagram, Twitter and Snapchat @juici_jerk) pages and are open to the public on Wednesdays & Fridays initially, who can follow them and put their orders in instantly via those channels or by phone (07498 045 416). The guys deliver the food to customers anywhere within a 3-mile radius.
Troy and Aaron are proud of their Tooting heritage and feel that there is a real buzz about the area which gives opportunities to them and other young local food businesses who want to make their mark. All of the meat used by Juici Jerk is halal and sourced locally, with all fruit & veg also purchased locally from Broadway Market.
Juici Jerk have been supported in their growth not only by their family and friends but by the team at Business Launchpad (based in The Trident Centre), who have provided free 1-2-1 mentoring and access to valuable workshops. “The workshop we attended gave us a great insight into how other young entrepreneurs plan to start and grow their business”, said Aaron, who also lists Jemal from Big J’s Kitchen as someone they recognise has reached great heights within the local community.
Juici Jerk aims to grow over the coming weeks and months, first of all by catering on more days of the week, then by featuring at local pop-ups and food festivals, with the ultimate dream to have their own restaurant. We wish Troy & Aaron well and look forward to keeping you informed on their progress!
Business Launchpad offers free business support & counselling to young entrepreneurs aged 16-30 in Wandsworth. To find out more about Business Launchpad, click here.
If you’re a young Tooting entrepreneur who’d like to be featured in future articles, then drop us some details via email – we’d love to hear from you!