They’re a dynamic duo – Rosa and Margo Flanagan and, while the incredibly successful business headed by these young visionaries came together with a pinch of luck, a dash of coincidence and a dollop of chance, it’s been a recipe for success.
Known as Two Raw Sisters, the pair are pushing plant-based foods into the mainstream, making it accessible, affordable and importantly – delicious. And yes, they laugh, they are actually sisters! Rosa was an elite middle-distance runner studying nutrition, while Margo was in her final year at Rangi Ruru Girls’ School when they discovered California’s raw plant-based culinary school – PlantLab, where together they studied culinary nutrition, sports nutrition and advanced raw cuisine.
On their way back home, they messaged their mum to get a group of friends together for a cooking workshop and the rest, as they say, is culinary history. “Nothing was cooked over 46 degrees, it took 12-24 hours to cook and used expensive ingredients such as nuts, seeds, coconut oil or superfoods that aren’t as abundantly available as we were used to in America,” Margo explains. “We soon realised the average Kiwi woman doesn’t have the time to start Thursday dinner on Monday.”
When it comes to the terms ‘raw’ and ‘plant-based’, it’s about eating a balanced diet with as much whole, unprocessed food as possible. This doesn’t mean you have to cut out meat, dairy, fish or poultry. Next on the culinary cards is a 90-recipe cookbook and the opening of a cooking school in central city health and wellbeing complex The Welder later in the year, enabling the pair to provide hands-on teaching, along with corporate team building events.
“New Zealand is such a big meat and dairy orientated country. Most people know how to cook meat but not so much fruits and vegetables in a fun, exciting, inventive way,” Rosa says.
“People don’t realise what it feels like to be at their peak of wellness. Change doesn’t happen if you don’t make changes.”