Rawsome will get your juices flowing
Now more than ever, Suzanne Keough believes in the power of the fresh juices she sells at her Rawsome Juice Bar on Queen Street in Charlottetown.
Each time she visits her boyfriend Connor Cameron – who plays and coaches hockey in Croatia – Keough turns to a familiar remedy for her jet lag. “First thing I do in the morning is drink The Garden 3,” she said, gesturing to the item on her menu. "It perks me right up, more than coffee ever does.”
Rawsome was one of 10 businesses recently awarded through the Innovation PEI Ignition Fund. Keough will use the $25,000 grant to purchase a second $16,000 juicer (the best in the world, she says) so she can keep up with demand.
The yoga teacher turned businesswoman says she began “playing around with juicing” at home a few years ago. She started cold-press bottling for herself and friends. Cold pressing is a decades-old method of extracting liquid from plants without denaturing enzymes or breaking down nutrients with high levels of heat or oxygen.
As a result of using this method, Suzanne explains that Rawsome juices are technically live – not artificially preserved -- so their shelf life is just 72 hours.
Keough had no intention of becoming a business owner, but that’s exactly what happened when she asked the owner of Kinetic Fitness if she could rent a corner of their space on Pownal Street. When Kinetic and Rawsome both got too busy for the top floor perch on Pownal, they moved into the larger space next to Freshii on Queen Street.Her customers are as diverse as the 11 types of juices she makes.“
People have so many reasons to juice – some want to cleanse, some have digestive issues,” Keough notes. “It’s the quickest way to get nutrients straight into your bloodstream.”
She uses local fruits and vegetables and now is working on a use for all of the nutrient-rich pulp left over from the juicing process. She’ll be working with BioFoodTech to create pulp chips or possibly a dietary supplement.
Besides the juices she sells that are proudly labeled “Made in PEI,” Rawsome also sells other organic and healthy bars and snacks.
“It’s more popular than I ever thought it would be.”