They rely on nostalgic snacks from other countries.
For both Samantha Paredes and Rish Dhall, snacking takes them back to where they grew up.
The couple didn’t always live here; Paredes moved from Mexico in 2006 and Dhall from India in 2016. The fact is that they have spent a large part of their lives elsewhere Basis for Snack Attackthe store they opened in March.
“Most of our products are nostalgic, right? So you are taken back to the past. Those are the hidden treasures,” says Dhall.
“Vancouver is such a city full of immigrants,” adds Paredes. “We wanted to make sure you know you might be missing a little bit of home, right. So here’s how you can get it (the snacks).”
“The only thing we can do is get them snacking that they actually grew up eating,” notes Dhall.
While some brand names are from other countries, others are local versions of what might be found in a corner shop. In particular, they highlight a kind of cone that they have that is covered in spices.
“That would be something I would have had[in Mexico],” says Paredes. “Why don’t I make it available for people to experience?”
In doing so, they also noticed that there are some similarities between the snacks from their childhood, notably some chilli-lime chips from India that match the Mexican snacks.
They also have nostalgic snacks from different foreign places. They have items from the UK, Germany, Turkey, China, Korea and more. Irish items are expected soon and they are working on getting items from the Philippines, UAE and Hawaii.
Local stuff too
The shop also has a few local items, including replica Barge Chilling Beach signs and custom rolling papers that can have all sorts of Vancouver symbols printed on them.
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get it going
The couple, who have been together for about four years after starting out as a hiking partner, are married and both worked full-time, recently decided to pool their experience and start their own company. Dhall brought web development and branding experience and some retail experience, while Paredes worked in customer service and her family runs a business.
They wanted to keep working, but Dhall had to quit his job to focus on the store. Luckily, they were able to find mentors through social media to help guide the process. While administrative paperwork slowed things down and finding space was difficult, they pressed on and relocated quickly when they could.
“It was really, especially for me, very satisfying to see where we started,” says Parades. “And see how it all came together so quickly and where we are now, right?”
This includes a quick turnaround for the room they are in, at 1022 Kingsway. They took over the site on March 1st and had their first day of business on March 25th (thanks in part to friends who helped with things like assembling shelves). A month later, on April 20th, they had their grand opening.
And the response was positive, as locals in the neighborhood are already becoming regular customers.
“The neighborhood has done us very well. And we’ve already made a lot of business friends and partnerships,” says Paredes.
There’s more to come
Since the store is still in its infancy, the two are still working on plans that they haven’t had time to implement yet. This includes a subscription snack box that they plan to send out monthly with mystery snacks. The same box will also be available in the store.
They also bought an e-scooter so they can deliver in store for free. Further out, Dhall is working on a unique line of t-shirts.
However, both seem excited about the future of replicating the store elsewhere. Dhall has put time and effort into perfecting the Snack Attack brand, and thanks to their looks, the two say they’ve already been approached by people who assume the store is a franchise and want to jump in. But the couple is taking a minute before launching more Snack Attacks.
“I’ll have to wait for that because I haven’t even developed the franchise business model yet,” says Dhall.
Snack Attack is located in Unit 3 at 1022 Kingsway. On weekdays it is open from 10:00 a.m. to 8:30 p.m. They don’t open before 11am on Saturdays and from 11am to 7pm on Sundays