The Purest Co established in 2019, co-founded by CEO Justin Chiam and COO Stuart Ho is a direct-to-consumer brand focused on bringing the natural goodness of traditional superfoods to the world. The company is one of the first brands in Singapore to introduce subscription services for traditional superfoods. Their signature products include ready-to-drink bird’s nests, Snow Hashima tonics and delicious collagen drinks.
Our team speaks to CEO Justin Chiam and COO Stuart Ho where they shared with us what made them set up The Purest Co, their dedication to quality, nutritional natural superfoods products and others. Read on to find out more.
(L-R): COO Stuart Ho and CEO Justin Chiam, co-founders of The Purest Co
Exclusive Interviews with CEO Justin Chiam and COO Stuart Ho of The Purest Co
1. Please share with us more about your background and what were you doing before starting out The Purest Co?
Justin: Prior to founding The Purest Co, I was an Equity Research Analyst with the Macquarie Group for almost three years, serving as their Consumer and Industrial sector analyst for the Singapore market. Before that, I had various stints at CIMB Securities, Credit Suisse, Nomura and United Overseas Bank in both Hong Kong and Singapore, in various equity research and global market teams.
Stuart: Prior to founding The Purest Co, I was a Risk Manager with Glencore PLC and worked on the Fuel Oil desk for three years. Before I joined Glencore PLC, I gained experience in the commodities industry with stints at Neptune Orient Lines and Singapore Petroleum Company.
2. What made you decide to collaborate with each other to start out The Purest Co?
Justin: Back in late 2018, my wife and I found out we were pregnant with our first child. I wanted to pamper her with some bird’s nest as a staple consumption throughout her pregnancy. However, I discovered that most of the ready-to-drink bird’s nest products available in the market were opaque with regards to their contents, nutritional value, cleaning methods and sources.
The struggle to find bird’s nest products that were transparent made me realise that there is a huge market gap. I decided to team up with my ex secondary schoolmate and close friend, Stuart, to address this gap. In 2019, we co-founded The Purest Co, a natural superfoods startup based in Singapore.
Stuart was my ex-schoolmate from secondary school through to college, and we make a great team together. There was a level of trust that Stuart and I have which I think is hard to come by; this makes working together just that much easier.
Additionally, we were working on several ideas and projects together already. So it was very natural for us to team up to start The Purest Co.
3. How do you go about sourcing the ingredients and coming up with the right formulation for your products?
Stuart: When we first started out, Justin’s uncle invited us to visit his home and the bird’s nest farms in Sitiawan, Malaysia. We subsequently made another trip to the birdhouses of Medan, Indonesia, which is home to a number of edible bird’s nest production houses.
The trip down to Sitiawan and Medan allowed us to learn more about the bird’s nests supply-chain and production. The knowledge and insight we gained on this trip definitely helped us tremendously when sourcing for ingredients and finding the right suppliers.
In order to come up with the right formulation for our products, we experiment with different ingredients and recipes all the time. We also try to blend science with natural ingredients by using key ingredients that have been clinically tested and proven effective.
4. What are some of the challenges that you faced when setting up The Purest Co and how do you overcome them?
Justin: An initial challenge we faced was finding a supplier good enough to produce the standard of bird’s nest that we required. We needed to find a trusted supplier with enough experience, yet they also had to have enough flexibility to engage in research and development of new flavours with us in a modern way. We worked closely with a number of suppliers initially, and tested many bottles of bird’s nests before finding a supplier who understood what we were trying to achieve and who also shared our values. It was only after this process that we launched the brand.
Another challenge we faced was to convince our customers that the price they were paying for our products provided much better value than what they were getting from other brands. Fortunately, we managed to build a loyal customer base through our unwavering commitment to high-quality products and customer experience.
(L-R) The Purest Co. COO Stuart Ho and CEO Justin Chiam
5. Can you share more about your natural superfoods products like Cave Origin Bird’s Nest with Classic Rock Sugar, Snow Hashima tonics and berry collagen drinks, how would they benefit your consumers especially for pregnant women?
Stuart: I think the benefits of superfoods like bird’s nest, Snow Hashima and collagen have been quite well-documented.
For our bird’s nest, we only use premium bird’s nests that are traditionally hand-cleaned. Everything we put into our bird’s nest products are 100% natural and with no additives. We’ve recently launched our latest product, ‘Cave Origin Bird’s Nest with Classic Rock Sugar”. It differs from our standard Classic flavour as it promises our customers a smoother and more pronounced bird’s nest taste, and is based on our own unique homemade recipe.
In terms of benefits, our bird’s nest products are well received by many of our customers who are pregnant. With the glycoproteins and amino acids present in the bird’s nest, it generally can help improve one’s immune system and also for general wellness. This is especially important for those who are expecting or who are new mothers.
In addition, many of our customers also consume our bird’s nest to boost their appearances. Studies have shown that bird’s nest is rich in epidermal growth factor, which facilitates cell repair, helping one to enhance their complexion.
For our Snow Hashima line, we maintain our commitment and use only the best raw ingredients. We cook our Snow Hashima with ingredients such as American ginseng and red dates, which are popular ingredients in traditional Chinese medicine, and commonly used to improve energy levels, support a healthy immune system and promote blood circulation and vitality.
Our Collagen Glow Berries are designed to complement our customers’ skincare routine and rejuvenate their skin from within. Using premium ingredients such as Japan Nitta-gelatin collagen and bilberries, it is the ideal supplement to maintain one’s health and beauty. The addition of 250mg Vitamin C guards against damage from free radicals while increasing bioavailability, rate of absorption, and assimilation.
Justin: Not just for expecting mothers, the nourishing and nutrient-rich properties of all our products are able to cater to consumers of all ages.
Additionally, in order to deliver premium quality superfood products to our customers, our brand only works with trusted suppliers and producers that have decades of experience and a long track record of producing high-quality products. In the production process, we put a strong emphasis on using quality raw ingredients, creating unique homemade recipes, and transparency. In doing this, we hope that we are able to provide our customers and their loved ones an enjoyable experience and a peace of mind when consuming our products.
Many expecting mums are big fans of our products, as we not only provide great value, but also the trust that our products are made with high-quality ingredients and with strict cooking processes. In this way, we give mums – and also dads – the peace of mind that when they buy something from The Purest Co, they are getting a superior product.
6. Lastly, what would you like to say to our readers who are looking forward and planning to try out the natural superfoods products from The Purest Co and what’s your next plan/project if any?
Stuart: We intend to expand on our offerings within our current categories, from our bird’s nest products to Snow Hashima tonics and collagen drinks In the near future, we also expect to roll out a few different product lines as well, but all under the health and wellness F&B product category.
Most of all, we are glad that we are able to provide both our customers and our loved ones a peace of mind when consuming these natural superfood products as their health and wellbeing are of utmost importance to us.
The Purest Co uses only premium ingredients combined with modern cooking processes based on unique homemade recipes to produce convenient, tasty and healthy products. With an extensive range of flavours, an emphasis on transparency in quality and nutrition, and an obsession over customer experience, The Purest Co is the preferred choice among traditional superfoods consumers. For more information, please visit https://purestnest.com/.