The Indie Series – Proven Goods Co.

Doughnuts have come a long way since Dutch settlers brought them to America in the late 18th century. But no one has taken the delicious treat further than North East independent bakery Proven Goods Co. With flavours ranging from maple cured bacon to double chocolate orange, Richard Dawson was keen to sit down with owners Amber and Joe to find out more about their enterprise

The idea for a business dedicated to decadent doughnuts came about due to a lack of quality offerings in the North East.

Amber says, “I couldn’t believe there wasn’t anywhere doing traditional baked doughnuts.”

They started off at Tynemouth market in early 2017 and have, in the short time since then, opened their own bakery and café in the popular Hoult’s Yard development.

“We started off with the markets to see if there was a customer base for the product and also to experiment with new recipes and it went down really well straight away,” Amber explains.

As to why the business took off so quickly, Amber muses, “I think everybody just appreciated how fresh they are, you really can taste the difference.”

What really sets Proven Goods Co. apart is their meticulous 17-hour production process. Amber reveals that the doughnuts before me were started the day before.

She explains, “About midday, we start making the dough in small batches. We use organic fresh yeast, which gives it really good flavour. Then after the first prove, they all go into the fridge overnight. We come back early in the morning at which point they’re all cut and hand rolled. After a final prove, they’re fried off, sugared and filled.”

Amazingly, Amber and Joe go through this process every morning, 4am during the week and 3am at the weekend. This kind of dedication demonstrates just how much hard work goes into making an independent business thrive.

“All of the attention to detail pays off in the end”, Amber says.

So what are the main challenges with basing your business around one product, the doughnut?

“I think it’s actually easier because you’re concentrating on one product and making it the best it can be,” Amber says.

“We always experiment with flavours too so there’s actually a lot of variety in one product,” she continues.

The success of Proven Goods Co. in such a short time shows that finding a niche and making it your own is good advice for any prospective independent business.

Something else that the business does very well is harness social media channels to promote their business.

“We wouldn’t have the business we have without Instagram. You can communicate with people more on Instagram and social media and I think that’s more important than just having a website with nice images and info,” Anna explains.

Instagram is central to their business.

“It’s how we take orders and let people know what doughnuts we have on every day,” Amber explains.

Social media marketing is something many businesses today are only just turning their attention to. But for Proven Goods Co. its where their business starts and ends.

To round up our chat, we asked the team what they thought of the wider context around their product, particularly on how they approached cultural trends towards healthy eating.

Their doughnuts are certainly decadent, but Amber is keen to highlight that they’re also incredibly fresh, made with all-natural ingredients and without any artificial flavourings or preservatives.

“If you’re going to have a treat, you should have the best,” she muses.

Amber adds, “It’s all about balance. I think that’s what being healthy is, you don’t deny yourself things, you let yourself have a treat.”

The tender love and care that goes into each and every doughnut really sets Proven Goods Co. apart from anything else on the market right now. If you are going to treat yourself, make sure their bakery in Hoult’s Yard is your first destination.

Proven Goods Co.