We have good news for all the low-carb lovers out there – South Africa’s biggest sandwich franchise, The Sandwich Baron, has recently revealed an additional Banting-friendly menu! Co-founder Sally J’Arlette-Joy felt the health benefits she experienced from following the wildly popular diet needed to be shared with the broader public. And so, the inspiration for a takeaway Banting option at The Sandwich Baron was born.
Sally also took the time to chat to us about the secrets of her sandwich success and her future plans for the business.
1. What sparked the idea of starting a business based on something as simple as sandwiches?
I lived in London for a decade and developed a huge love for a really well-made sandwich. Each morning, as I made my way to work, I would buy two sandwiches from my favourite deli. I dreamt about one day opening my very own sandwich shop. After moving back home, I realised there was a gap in the market and that it was time to make my dream a reality. I knew it would be successful, as there were hardly any #sandwich shops in SA, and I’d seen how well the concept did overseas.
2. What are some of the biggest challenges you’ve faced so far, and what lessons did you learn from them?
The biggest challenge has been handling the pressure and demands of owning so many stores. I’ve learnt the importance of surrounding yourself with capable staff who can support you when things go wrong.
3. What was the turning point to focus on more Banting-inspired fare?
I had been on low-carb diets and had seen how difficult it was to find suitable and easily accessible lunch options. Upon realising how few places were offering Banting-friendly food, I saw a real need to provide these dieters with some delicious alternatives.
4. How will your new Banting approach affect the essence of your business?
Our Banting menu has attracted new customers, but hasn’t distracted us from our focus of making scrumptious sandwiches. Since the menu change, our regular sandwich sales have actually increased! So we continue to develop and improve our original sandwich menu. I don’t see myself ever stopping making good old-fashioned sandwiches, they’ll always be my first love.