I’m Thomas Hal Robson-Kanu of Turmeric Co and I’m a #WORLDCHANGER

This week on the #WORLDCHANGERS series, we speak to Thomas Hal Robson-Kanu, an international and premier league football player and founder of the Turmeric Co. – a company that produces a delicious range of functional natural turmeric shots.

Thomas Hal Robson-Kanu, founder of Turmeric Co.

Location: Belgravia, London

Current job: Premier League football and CEO of The Turmeric Co.

One word that best describes how you work: Effective!

My role model: Dr Joe Dispenza

My greatest success: My family

My biggest fear: Snakes

Something I love: My family!

Something I hate: Sitting still!

First of all, tell us a little about your background and how you get the idea for The Turmeric Co?

As a kid, all I wanted was to be a footballer. I was well on my way to achieving this dream, but I had a huge setback. A terrible challenge left my knee totally shattered – at the time the doctors said it was unlikely I’d ever play at a professional level again. Naturally, I was devastated and became somewhat obsessed with finding a remedy. Especially since the painkillers, I was given had adverse side effects. So, I looked everywhere I could for a solution. Ideally a natural one. When I used the natural, raw root of the superfood, turmeric – within a unique blend that we developed as a family, the effects really were incredible. The inflammation in my injury totally subsided. I went on to have a successful career as a pro and am feeling fitter than ever and am now focused on helping as many people as I can with feel-good, functional nutrition.

Where does your passion for sport come from?

I’m naturally really competitive. Even from a young age, I’d race the other kids to lunch. I had to win at everything! So that definitely helped. But I guess I’ve always loved how the sport makes me feel. It’s an amazing way to be able to spend your time and express yourself and the joy it brings so many people around the world makes it a privilege to be experiencing this at the highest level of the game.

How was the transition from football player to entrepreneur?

For me, it was all really natural. I have so much belief in the benefits of the product we have created, so it doesn’t really feel like work. Every day I hear from people who have had positive experiences with our shots – it’s almost as thrilling as having fans chant your name but even more rewarding in the long run! It’s also great because I am able to really physically push myself while playing football, and then mentally push myself with the business, and they almost offset each other which allows me to really give my best in both.

Do you see ‘behaviour changing’ in people healthy lifestyle by paying more attention to their nutrition?

I think what we’ve seen over the past 40 years when it comes to attitudes toward exercise is just incredible. People didn’t use to run for leisure. Or have any idea that smoking was bad for you. Nowadays though, science and nutrition have come such a long way and people’s behaviours are certainly changing – just look at what the high streets look like compared to the 90s… But there is still a long way to go, and at The Turmeric Co., we are enjoying playing a role in that nutritional education of society. An example is, most people wouldn’t see an issue with a ‘health’ shot with its base ingredient apple juice, whereas for us, we would never put a filler such as concentrated apple juice in functional health shot as ultimately that is both high in sugar with very little added nutritional value, while also being a really cheap ingredient to use. These are some of the examples that we are committed to educating people in all walks of life on and that is why we are proud to say we offer the best natural health shot range on the market, because of the quality and the benefits every ingredient we use offers, and we do not want to shortchange our customers on this, we want to give them the best.

What do you think it’s essential to adjust a business in this unusual time?

Flexibility, empathy and drive! It’s been such a difficult time for so many people, but we’ve had the privilege of being able to help – by supporting the public’s natural well being with our shots and providing key workers with hundreds of free shots – to help them get through their toughest days. So being dynamic as a business is key, if you didn’t sell online and relied on stores to get your product into the hands of consumers, you will have needed to shift that model, so you are now able to deliver to your customers directly to their doorstep. If you didn’t focus on having a really strong brand and paid little attention to your customers and community, then you are going to lose customers because their purchasing patterns are changing, so you want to be communicating directly with them at every opportunity. But most of all, behind the scenes of every business, you want to be supporting your team and staff, as this time has been difficult for everyone and they are the ones keeping the engine room going, so start paying real close attention to your team on a human level.

Where do you see The Turmeric Co being in the next three years?

We are committed to continually bring the best quality range to our customers, and that means making sure every day we give our best, which is something we love doing. This ultimately will allow us to continue to bring functional nutrition to as many people as possible. Tens of thousands of people are now using our range daily, which is an incredible achievement in itself, given how new a concept a natural ‘health’ shot is still to people. So for me, it’s continuing to focus on the small wins each and every day, and this is what gives you the best opportunity for success.

Turmeric Co_Products
Turmeric Co Drinks

Do you have a cause that is close to your heart?

 100%, I’m passionate around education for future generations. I feel the old models of education are outdated and because of technological innovation, the exchange of information, new information, is happening faster than ever. So for me, I want to play a positive role in creating an environment that shares information that wasn’t available to our grandparents and even our parents as this will inevitably lead to better lives and have a positive impact on society as a whole.

How do you recharge? What do you do when you want to forget about work?

Spending time at home with the family is when I feel most relaxed, whether that be in the evenings with my wife or on the weekends with the whole family. With a cup of turmeric tea, my feet up with the paper on a lazy Sunday – that’s when I get one off!

Best advice you would give to an aspiring entrepreneur just starting up their business?

Persevere! If I had listened to the doctors, I’d probably have never become a footballer. Had I not kept looking for a natural solution that’d help me fulfil my dreams, I’d never have started The Turmeric Co., let alone have become a professional athlete! If you’ve been knocked down… that’s great. Show us what you’ve got on the rebound!

If you knew then what you know now, what would you have done differently?

Nothing! Life is a journey full of experiences that are there to inform and guide us. Some will be harder than others, but you are never meant to stop learning.

Last but not least, can you suggest the best diet to have balanced nutrition?

I’m a firm believer in natural functional nutrition, and what I mean by that is nutrition with a purpose, not eating for the sake of eating, and understanding what you are putting into your body. It is empowering because it ultimately becomes a lifestyle change for the better when people commit to it. However, everyone is different, and no one nutritional plan will fit all, and therefore it is about trying what works for you and having self-awareness on the impact of what you put into your body, has on your energy, clarity and body. Nutrients act as building blocks that support every single function of the human body, when your nutrient deficient, these building blocks are weak or become damaged, causing a knock-on effect that leads to fatigue, stress and disease. As a rule of thumb, look for unprocessed foods which are nutritionally dense. Whether these be protein, carb or fat sources because you need them all.

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