Epleslang: The natural juice made with apples from your neighbour’s garden
Epleslang is a start-up and social enterprise founded two years ago in Oslo, Norway. We produce and sell a premium quality, natural apple juice made from unused and wasted apples, harvested from private gardens around the city with the help of those most in need of a job. So when you drink Epleslang you might be enjoying the ‘fruit’ of your neighbor’s garden. Wondering what the word Epleslang means? It’s a unique Norwegian word to describe the art of nabbing apples from your neighbour’s garden!
And now we are crowdfunding to raise funds for a van to help us continue the great work we have started! Read all about it below.
A story of unused resources – of wasted opportunity!
Our neighbourhood apples
Each year tonnes of apples from private gardens in our city go uneaten. We’ve all seen these gorgeous apples hanging from the trees every summer, only to fall to the ground and left to rot during Autumn. To see these apples go to waste year after year felt so wrong to us! When looking up at these trees, we realised the amazing and infinite potential that these wasted apples represent both as a natural yet unused resource. And that’s how the idea of Epleslang was born.
But Epleslang isn’t just about apples, ours is also a story about people - people with disabilities. Those often left aside by society and unable to find a job because they are perceived to be undervalued as a resource. At Epleslang we saw them as another unused resource. So we teamed up with a local group and set out to train and provide them with a good livelihood. They are now responsible for the harvesting of all the gardens and the bottle labelling - a total of 22,000 Epleslang bottles were produced in 2013 alone. Something we couldn’t have achieved without their help! And today, they are highly motivated employees and a proud part of the Epleslang Family!
A New Concept – Young People
This year we want plan to include troubled youth to our concept. These are young people who’ve become alienated from society because of unfortunate choices and situations. We believe in not giving up on them but rather in giving them a second chance. We will provide them with work experience so that they can slowly re-enter society, take part and contribute once again. Through our work experience opportunities, we offer them leadership roles, a renewed sense of self-confidence and a unique opportunity to learn tolerance by working together with people with disabilities.
Combining all these untapped resources – that’s what makes Epleslang unique!
Society has changed a lot since these apple trees were planted years ago and we saw a challenge in building a service for today’s conscious consumer. It is most exciting to work with a product built on both social and environmental values whilst preserving the best that nature has to offer.With any social enterprise, social missions are an essential force behind the business’s motivations and values. Yet we understand that we can only remain sustainable as a business and provide our unique work environment, if we work profitably ourselves. So, yes, this means that we are for profit! Profits enable us to keep up the positive changes we make for our environment and the people we employ!
We’ve come pretty far!
From an initial idea by four students, including Anne Dubrau, from the University of Oslo´s Center for Entrepreneurship in 2012, Epleslang has worked through two harvests and become a registered company. In our first year, we rode our bikes and public transport to harvest 7 tonnes of apples, and created jobs for four people with disabilities! In our second season in 2013, we harvested an amazing 22 tonnes of apples from 231 gardens in the greater Oslo area. During the season, we employed eight workers through our business partners.
Some of our awards: Thank you for this great support and appreciation!
- Named Best-in-test by Norway´s biggest newspaper Aftenposten in 2013.
- Golden Apple Award for an outstanding positive business idea based on values and resources by The Norwegian Apple community (Norsk Eplefest).
- Norway´s Social Entrepreneur of the Year 2013 by Ferd Social Entrepreneur.
Why are we Crowdfunding?
We need a van. We need your help!
Up until now we ‘ve been relying on borrowed and hired cars, bikes, public transport and people’s generosity to transport our people and apples around the city. And although we’ve done well to come this far without our own transport, we realised that as we grow, employ more people, and harvest more gardens we really need our own van to ease the considerable logistics we face. Being able to pick up workers, transport apples and deliver our juice would make a tremendous difference – and ultimately reach more thirsty customers! When you pledge money to our campaign you can choose one of our fabulous rewards.
We’re calling on old and new supporters to help us reach our target funding goal.
We’re counting on your help and support because without you we wouldn’t be here in the first place!
Here’s how you can help us meet our funding goal
- Have a look at the rewards available and choose one to suit your wallet
- Pledge the amount toward your chosen reward
- Or you can choose to make a custom pledge – whatever tickles your fancy!
- Payments are taken through Paypal.
- When the campaign is successful, then your money will be taken – if for some reason we do not meet our target, you will not be charged.
And there are other ways you can support our crowdfunding campaign!
Help us spread the word through your social network! Post, like, share, brag, tell all your friends, colleagues, family, neighbours, anyone who loves apples and wants to help do something good! So what are you waiting for? GO ON SPREAD THE WORD!
Some of the Rewards you can pledge for:
Pledge 10 euros for Anne’s special recipe for Apple Pie!
Pledge 25 euros to receive a bottle of juice signed by our founders at a special event.
Pledge for a chance to join the Epleslang team for a day – great for team building!
Our Early Supporters & Partners
We wouldn’t be where we are today without the trust, support and engagement of our fantastic business partners: Nordpolen Industrier, Abildsø Gård juice pressing, Dinamo design, Byhands illustrations, Miljøbudet logistics and all our other partners and our retailers.
Thanks also to our families, friends and interns for the long nights and long weekends of impressive engagement, support, back-up and inspiration! And to our early followers on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram – you really helped us to find our way!
Together with your help and contribution we know that we can meet our funding goal! And hopefully you’ll catch a glimpse of the Epleslang van cruising around your neighbourhood, busy picking up apples, driving our people and our resources and delivering bottles. Help us do something good – and stay sustainable!
Our Retail Supporters
We sell our juice to some of Oslo’s finest cafes, restaurants, hotels and shops.
Hva er Epleslang?
Epleslang er en sosial oppstartsbedrift, grunnlagt for to år siden i Oslo. Vi produserer premium kvalitet eplejuice laget av epler høstet i private hager hos mennesker som ikkehar tid eller mulighet til å plukke og utnytte eplene sine selv. Eplehøsterne i Epleslang er mennesker med fysiske eller psykisk utfordringer, og som ikke så lett fungerer i det vanlige jobbmarkedet.
Ideen bak epleslang er å utnytte ressurser som har lett for å gå tapt. Når du nyter et glass Epleslang Juice, nyter du fruktene fra naboens hage. Med god samvittighet.
Vi har vunnet flere priser for arbeidet vårt:
- Juicen vår ble best-i-test i Aftenposten i 2013.
- Vi fikk Gulleplet fra Norsk Eplefest, for vår unike forretningside.
- Vi ble kåret til årets sosiale entreprenør av Ferd i 2013.
Hva er Crowdfunding?
Det norske begrepet folkefinansiering er beskrivende for hva grunntanken bak crowdfunding er. Folket – du og jeg- er med og finansierer prosjekter, bedrifter eller mennesker. Når alle bidrar med en liten sum hver, blir det tilsammen nok til å gi liv til spennende prosjekter. Alle som bidrar, får en belønning, og belønningene avhenger av beløpet man bidrar med. Bidrag og belønninger blir bare overført dersom kampanjen når målet sitt.
Crowdfunding er utbredt i USA og Europa. I Mums Mean Business jobber de for at crowdfunding skal bli lett tilgjengelig både for norske forbrukere og norske oppstartsbedrifter.
Hvorfor “Crowdfunder” Epleslang?
Eplseslang vokser, det betyr flere arbeidere å transportere, flere eplehager å besøke og flere flasker som skal leveres. Vi trenger en skikkelig varebil til å fortsette det gode arbeidet vårt, og derfor ber vi om din hjelp i denne kampanjen.
Du kan hjelpe oss ved å “pledge”, love oss en sum penger mot en av de fine belønningene vil tilbyr. Du hjelper oss også ved å dele kampanjen med alle dine venner, så ordet om Epleslang og den viktige jobben vi gjør spres til så mange som mulig.
Hva er det å “Pledge” egentlig?
Mange stusser over ordet pledge, det betyr å love. Når du lover å gi støtte til en kampanje, så vil en sum bli reservert på kontoen din. Først når kampanjeperioden er over, og kampanjen har nådd målet sitt vil beløpet faktisk bli trekt. Dersom kampanjen ikke når målet, vil pengene bli på kontoen din.
For å være sikker på at du får belønningen du har ønsket deg, må du registrere deg med navn og adresse når du støtter oss. Vi har valgt å bruke PayPal som betalingssystem. Det er det mest vanlige og det tryggeste systemet for Crowdfunding-platformer.
TUSEN TAKK FOR HJELPA!
What does Pledging mean?
- When you pledge money, it means you are promising money to us in support of our crowdfunding campaign. If you just want to offer money but don’t want to receive a reward, click on the Pledge button at the top of the page and enter any amount you like. Or choose one of our fantastic apple-y rewards and pledge the amount associated with each reward. When you pledge you offer an amount of money which you then pay only when the campaign reaches its target goal.
- If we receive enough pledges to reach our target goal, the project is successful and all money pledges is processed and you receive your reward. If we don’t meet our goal the pledges are not charged. So all your support is welcome! If you don’t want to pledge money but like what we’re doing, please consider telling your friends about the campaign – they might be keen to pledge and also share with their friends.
Where will the money I pledge to Epleslang go?
- Your money will go directly to buy a transport van to ease our amazing logistics. Our apple trees are found in over 220 gardens which are spread over the whole Oslo area. And imagine – Norway has about 300 different kinds of native apple trees so these are not all ready to harvest at the same time.
What kind of van are you going to buy?
- We would love to buy an electric vehicle, as environmentally-friendly as possible. It will be used to transport our employees, apples and bottles. Our aim is to be a year-round employer who can utilise all the resources we have in our city. Think about all these fruits, vegetables, flowers – things we could give a new chance!
I live outside of Norway, how can I get your brilliant idea working in my city?
- Thank you for asking! This will be our next step! We are really looking forward to spread our idea and to help all unused resources everywhere be used. If you are seriously interested to have Epleslang in our city – please contact us at firstname.lastname@example.org.
How and when will I get my package in the post (Tote bag or Goodie Pack)?
- As soon as the campaign is over we will go to a post office and send your bottle to the address you provide us when you register on the site.
Why did we set a maximum on some of our rewards?
- If we could – we would let all of you taste our wonderful apple juice! But since we only produce on a small scale – and we are still developing our business, we can not afford it. You are welcome to buy our juice through our retailers. Please check on our website www.epleslang.com to find your closest retailer. Thank you!
I live in Oslo and want to buy some juice now – where can I buy some?
- That’s wonderful! We have an overview of our great retailing partners on our website www.epleslang.com.
Where is the juice juiced?
- Our apples from your neighbour’s garden were pressed by a local apple press, called Abildsø gård. This is little farm in Oslo which is doing really well for its local community. They have been nominated to be the Social Entrepreneur of the Year 2014.
What is in the apple juice?
- The juice is 100 % natural – only good and healthy juice that comes directly from handpicked apples! No other additives. No added water. No added sugar.
What is social entrepeneurship?
- It is something which comes from your heart to change social problems or to highlight real human challenges. At the same time it creates a business – where the business philosophy is strongly based on values and positive impact to solve the social challenge. So it is both – doing what is right and doing business.
If you just backed and you don’t see your name yet, don’t worry! All names will be listed when the project ends no matter what.
Pitch Update #2: Epleslang
Some support from Oslo blogger Ida Eliassen-Coker!
Pitch Update #2: Epleslang