Well + Happy is a London-based functional food brand. Founded in 2015 by chocolatier Chelsea Parsons, the company makes raw, vegan-friendly, cacao-centric products that are free from refined sugar, soy and gluten. Each beautiful bar and bite is handmade and decorated using nuts, berries, fruit, and edible flowers.
A recent crowd-funding campaign raised far more than its £15,000 target and the company plans to improve their production facilities, expand the range, and offer a subscription service in the coming months.
I caught up with Chelsea to talk about the benefits of eating raw chocolate, why she started her own business and how she stays well and happy.
WHAT INSPIRED YOU TO START WELL + HAPPY?
I started Well + Happy because healthy products that use genuinely good ingredients and still taste great were virtually non-existent.
WHY DO YOU FEEL IT'S SO IMPORTANT TO USE NATURAL INGREDIENTS?
The positive effects they have on our bodies! We can thrive in optimum health and happiness by providing our bodies with natural goodness. Using quality ingredients in our chocolate also ensures that the taste is amplified.
FROM WHERE DO YOU SOURCE YOUR INGREDIENTS?
Organically-certified providers always. We form close relationships with our suppliers to ensure everything is ethically sourced and as natural as it can be.
HOW DO YOU DEVELOP NEW RECIPES?
Lots of fun in the kitchen! Usually myself or someone in my team will have a creative idea for a recipe or a flavour combination and we'll experiment with it; if it works, we'll develop it further. It definitely doesn't always work though – we've made so many not-so-nice favours, but that's all part of the fun.
YOUR FAVOURITE PRODUCT IN THE RANGE:
Midnight Dark. It's 90% cacao, infused with celtic sea salt. It's so rich and decadent and due to it's high cacao content is abundant in cacao goodness.
WHAT'S NEXT FOR WELL + HAPPY?
We have big plans to grow! We want to bring raw chocolate to the mainstream and show people that eating chocolate can be good for you. We hope to educate our customers about the benefits of eating the raw ingredients we use in our chocolate range.
WHAT IS YOUR FOOD PHILOSOPHY?
Eat in a happy state. Our mantra is good food and positive vibes – the two really do go hand-in-hand. Our raw chocolate contains chemical compounds from the cacao plant which increase serotonin levels in the brain and gut, but it's just as important to choose to enjoy it in a happy place. If you've ever been angry or upset and decided to eat something, you'll know it wreaks havoc with your digestion.
BEST MEAL YOU EVER HAD:
Oh gosh...that's a tough one! Fresh fish on a beach springs to mind. But truly any meal where I'm feeling particularly content tastes amazing.
WHAT DO YOU DO TO MAINTAIN YOUR HEALTH AND WELLBEING?
Exercise is very important to me – I feel brand new when I've worked out, practiced yoga or been for a run. Sleep is also important and I'm usually in bed by 10pm.
WHAT MAKES YOU HAPPY?
Really good food, being present, sunflowers, raw chocolate, sunrises, practicing gratitude, celebrating the small things, laughter, being by the water, picnics in the sunshine, thoughtful gestures and spending time with people I love and value.