Entrepreneur's low-sugar vegan gummy bears are a hit in the candy aisle

Jul 12 2021, 5:13 pm

Made in Vancouver is a collaboration between Vancity and Daily Hive. Together, we’re turning the spotlight onto local businesses, organizations, and individuals who are helping to create a healthy local economy.

Erica Williams’ passion for health and fitness can be seen throughout her career as an entrepreneur. The Vancouver-based vegan entrepreneur has worked as a personal trainer and a nutritionist, but her newest venture may be the sweetest of them all.

Williams is the founder of Yumy Bear, a line of low-sugar, vegan gummy bears that are naturally sweetened and made without sugar alcohols or gelatin. Each bag features less than 3 grams of sugar.

“We are innovators in the confectionery space and we are proud to produce the most affordable low-sugar, plant-based candy on the market,” said Williams, CEO of Yumy Bear in an interview with Daily Hive.

“We believe in making healthier candy options accessible to everyone.”

Yumy Bear

Yumy Bear (Submitted)

Vancity has been supporting people in our communities since 1946, like local entrepreneurs. As part of our Made in Vancouver series spotlighting local businesses, we talked to Erica Willams about making a low-sugar vegan gummy bear.

Williams shared that her entrepreneurial drive is a trait that she inherited from her father.

“I was born with an entrepreneurial spirit and a business mindset from day one,” Williams said. “Growing up I was very close to my dad and seeing his transition from an employee to a business owner showed me what is possible if you work hard and provide a great service or product to your clients.

“I have always been heavily involved in health and fitness throughout my personal journey and weight transformation, along with coaching others towards their goals. Throughout my time with my clients, there was a recurring theme: a need for a healthy and affordable option to traditional high sugar candy for their sugar cravings. This further inspired me to create Yumy Bear, the first completely low-sugar plant-based, candy line that tastes amazing and is also the most affordable.”

Yumy Bear

Yumy Bear (Submitted)

Yumy Bear is currently available in Peach and Strawberry Kiwi flavours. The plant-based candy is available for purchase at various retailers as well as Canada-wide direct from the company’s website.

“If you like candy, you’ll love Yumy Bear,” said Williams. “We want to transform the confectionary space for the better and transition the thinking away from candy being a bad guilty treat associated with weight gain, cavities, and diabetes. Instead, we think that candy can be a healthy snack they feel good about eating and incorporate into their health journey.
“We are excited to expand nationwide and internationally and be the leading innovator in the confectionery space while making a positive impact on people’s health, animal welfare, and the planet.

Yumy Bear is also breaking new ground when the company goes public on the Canadian Securities Exchange in early July (CSE:YUMY).

“We are so excited to be the first and only low-sugar plant-based confectionery company that people can invest in,” said Williams. “I believe my money is a vote and I use it to vote for more of what I want to see. Our amazing team has worked so hard and we’re very proud to be able to celebrate this moment for the low-sugar space and excited about our future expansion plans.”

Yumy Bear

Yumy Bear (Submitted)

While the company is working hard on expansion, Yumy Bear ensures that they devote resources to supporting local community initiatives, charities and animal rescue centres. The company has made donations to Bloom Group Women’s and Children’s Housing, Egale for the Pride Community, and has an ongoing relationship with Northern Lights Wildbear Rescue.

“I have always loved animals and have two rescue dogs that I love so much,” shared Williams. “I grew up in a family that is involved in giving back and supporting great organizations that help people, animals and wildlife. Incorporating charities and local initiatives into the culture of Yumy Bear is very important to help make a positive impact, no matter how big or small.
“We are also hosting a beach clean-up event at the end of July this year and want to get as many people involved as possible! We encourage the Vancouver community to participate with us and take an evening out of their busy schedules to clean up one of Vancouver’s local beaches. Anyone that is interested in joining can head to the ‘support local‘ tab on our website and sign up to receive event information and updates.
“We live in such a beautiful place and want to take care of it so future generations are able to enjoy it too.”
Daily Hive

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