Tongyeong’s just caught marin products jump into SEA SEA seafood meal kits for you to eat and cook nice and easy

김태인 기자l승인2022.08.24l수정2022.08.24 10:46

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▲ SEA SEA / CEO Minseo Cha

A meal kit is a new food service business model where we can order or buy pre-portioned and sometimes partially-prepared food ingredients to cook at home. The social distancing has brought a boom in meal kit industry in South Korea and many of us are already familiar with picking up one from a meal kit store easily found on the street nowadays on the way home.

Nestled in just a minute walk from the clean sea in Tongyeong on the southern coast of South Korea is a meal kit store SEA SEA. It is rising fast as a seafood meal kit store in the city thanks to its ingredients made from fresh marine products caught right in front of the clean and blue sea. 

CEO Minseo Cha majored in stage design and went to London to study fashion marketing and business administration. While digging into visual merchandiser, the pandemic broke out and she had to fly home and carried on the course online. During this time of remote learning, she extensively read articles about fast rising meal kit industry in the UK and the US and found herself brewing a new passion from her deep down.

Calling back the times when her mother sent meal-kit-like food for her to prepare easily and instantly at home when in university years in Seoul, she was convinced that she could do it. As luck would have it, she happened to know the government’s startup support for young entrepreneurs, applied and was listed in the finalists. 

“I was just busy making my presentation look nice and appealing. I never thought my business idea and plan would won the support (15 million won/approx. $15,000 USD). It was only when the startup training set sail by the staff of the support center that I realized my business plan would work its way.” said Cha.

Knowing how to get the freshest ingredients everyday, setting up a subscription based orders alongside day-prepared-day-sold principle, and the store look immaculate and trendy, she was ready to challenge her wild dream. 

Waking up 6 in the morning every day and the choice of menus are many and variety as long as they are seafood, the buzz went from mouth to mouth at first but took on a roller coast uncontrollably to start spreading far and wide. All ingredients come from her 70 years old family business in fisheries and all sources are HACCP approved. 

When all is said and done, there is nothing better than the taste and the look of the food. Proven taste and the convenience of cooking aside, the look of each meal kit, especially the salads, is very attractive and mouth-watering. 

“I didn’t like the idea of meal kits going through a number of intermediary dealers and distributors because it can affect the freshness of the food on one hand and the price on the other. So I brought up an idea of exposing all preparing, making and delivery processes through my social media accounts that they are hygienically prepared and made on daily basis and directly delivered to consumers without intermediary dealers.” said Cha.

Still in her late 20s, this young Korean entrepreneur is ambitious to take a step further to grow her business not only in the peninsular but to the world: “In a long term perspective, I’m thinking of using the rich resources of the FDA recognized clean sea of Tongyeong and my family’s 70 year old fishery expertise to make the local seafood frozen and export to the world alongside meal kit.” <PowerKorea>


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