Have you ever felt like quitting your job and traveling the world instead? That is exactly what Ray Lui and Mary McCann, owners of Sprinly, did and their travels are what inspired their new successful business. This couple exemplifies how with hard work and passion, anyone can create solutions to important problems, such as the health of our nation.
Ray Lui and Mary McCann regularly worked over 100-hour weeks consulting high-growth tech companies at an investment bank in San Francisco’s Silicon Valley. Needless to say, the fast-paced environment and long hours of their work rarely gave them time to put effort into healthy eating. Most foods that are quick and claim to be healthy truly are not when you read the ingredients.
Inspirational Backpacking Trip
In the summer of 2014, Lui and McCann quit their jobs to backpack around the world for 6 months with no backup plan. It turned out to be the best decision of their lives because this couple was extremely inspired by their trip to Southeast Asia.
Lui and McCann meditated with monks, camped in the rainforest, and lived in rural China. However, a monk in Japan changed their viewpoint on their lives during one of their meditation retreats. The monk was the same age as them and he told them how he did not like his profession of being a monk. The monk revealed that he only chose this life path because he wanted to make his parents proud by carrying out the family tradition. The monk reminded the couple how lucky they were to have the freedom to pursue whatever passions in life they wanted to. This story stuck with this couple and after their travels, they returned to Lui’s hometown of Cleveland with inspiration to create healthy, accessible food in the Midwest and throughout the country.
Creation of Sprinly
Lui and McCann created Sprinly, which is a plant-based, vegan, gluten free meal delivery service that requires no preparation. The food is organically sourced and keeps customers coming back with a variety of changing entree options that rotate each week. Sprinly started by delivering their food within a 30 mile radius of Cleveland. They want the food to be easily accessible like fast food is to people who work long 100 hour work weeks. They want to give the option to those with barely any free time to live healthily as well as those who live in less populated areas.
How Sprinly works is that members choose a weekly plan for plant-based meals. Each week, customers get healthy meals delivered to their doorstep. Meals are shipped by FedEx in insulated bags with ice and instructions on how to warm the food with the stove or oven. The best part is that it is efficient since no cooking is required and you just need to heat it up. In addition, the owners work with nutritionists and a plant-based doctor who advise them on ingredients and menus. Therefore, their food is guaranteed to be healthy and gives one all of the nutrients they need.
Inspired by Flavor, Perfected by Nutrition
Sprinly is a very creative brand in which they make nutritious, healthy versions of the foods we all love the taste of. Their motto is “inspired by flavor, perfected by nutrition.” For example, Sprinly created a healthy version of the unhealthy deep-fried falafel by adding vegetables and baking it. Then, Sprinly made a vegetarian meatball topped with a cashew and lemon juice “cheese.” These healthy versions of unhealthy food are so flavorful that people would choose them over the unhealthy options.
Sprinly is also a unique brand with unique food that utilizes ingredients that are less common. Once again, they are inspired by different global foods that one may not see or use everyday, and it’s a great way to get people to stay open-minded and expand their palettes. For example, kelp or zucchini noodles are used instead of normal spaghetti at times. By offering both unique flavors and comfort foods, it allows people to experience a wide variety of healthy options, which further encourages people to maintain their healthier diet.
An interesting fact about the customers of Sprinly is that the majority of them are not vegan. The majority of customers are people who want to eat healthier with vegetables but do not have the time to cook for themselves. Therefore, you do not have to be dedicated to being vegan, gluten-free or vegetarian to feel worthy of using this service. Everyone is encouraged and welcome to use it, especially those just starting on their health journey. People tend to like it as well, even if they do not consider themselves “healthy eaters” because of their amazing new flavors of food.
Sprinly launched in 2016 and it has already expanded incredibly throughout Ohio, Michigan, Pennsylvania, Indiana, Kentucky, Delaware, Maryland, New Jersey, West Virginia, Virginia, Nashville, Washington D.C., and Chicago. Lui and McCann plan on going national with his business since they have expanded through much of the Midwest. “It’s definitely awesome to see more and more healthy options in Cleveland and all around the country, but we believe that honestly healthy food should be the norm and not the exception.” They did not want honestly healthy food to only be available in big cities. Instead, they believe it should be in every pocket of the country.
The mission of Sprinly is to spread health and create happiness. Sprinly not only wants to give you your valuable time back to focus on yourself and the things you love, but they also want you to live a healthy lifestyle as well. They want people to eat honestly healthy food and not just food that is marketed as being “fake” healthy. With Sprinly, one never has the excuse that they do not have the time to cook healthy meals. With their incredible innovation and success, Lui and McCann are accomplishing their mission of making the world healthier, one delivery of food at your doorstep at a time.
Marisa Ward is a Digital Marketing and Operations intern at LaunchHouse. She is a Scripps Communication Studies, Marketing, and Social Media student at Ohio University graduating in December 2019.