BlackGarlic ceases operations as market not familiar with concept

Jessicha Valentina

The Jakarta Post


Jakarta   /  Sat, July 15, 2017  /  12:46 pm

BlackGarlic Express, which sells rendang and spices, will continue to operate under the product’s founder William Wongso Kuliner.(BlackGarlic's Instagram/File)

Bad news for Jakarta’s Stepford wives who seek to serve delicious yet practical home-cooked meals as BlackGarlic, a meal ingredient catering startup, decided to cease operations as of Friday.

However, BlackGarlic Express, a line that sells rendang (beef simmered in coconut milk and spices) and spices, will continue to operate under the product’s founder, the William Wongso Kuliner brand. Customers with remaining BlackGarlic credits are recommended to purchase the products.

The BlackGarlic team will reportedly continue to serve customers until July 19.

Founded in 2015, BlackGarlic aimed to bring the joys of cooking to the public by providing individually packaged MSG-free ingredients complete with step-by-step recipes. The recipes were developed under the watchful eyes of local culinary expert William Wongso.

Read also: Black Garlic: Bringing back the joy of home cooking

A similar concept has been applied by US-based company Blue Apron. While Blue Apron went public last month, BlackGarlic had to stop operating as the local market was not familiar with the idea.

BlackGarlic CEO and co-founder Michael Saputra told The Jakarta Post via email that despite the company managing to attract over 10,000 customers in the past two years, it had a difficult time retaining them. He said the market was not ready to make BlackGarlic products part of their daily lives.

“[BlackGarlic] was a new concept and we put considerable effort into introducing it to the public,” he said, adding that the cost of acquiring new customers ended up being higher than the amount customers spent on the service. (kes)