Allergy Sense interviews Organic Oven founder Peachy Yutangco

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I had the pleasure of meeting Peachy Yutangco, the owner of Organic Oven early this morning at the new location at 3189 Yonge St. north of Lawrence.

Organic Oven, 3189 Yonge St.

We sat down over a latte and chatted about her business.  I learned alot about Peachy and about the passion she has for this business.  Here are some excerpts from our conversation:

AM: Hi Peachy. Thanks for taking the time to meet with me this morning. What a great bakery you have here – when did you open?

PY: We opened this location on Yonge St. on May 13, 2009 in the afternoon. We wanted to open on May 1, 2009 but things are delayed, construction, etc.

AM (AllergyMom): How did you get started?

PY (Peachy): I really wanted an organic bakery. I thought there was no bakery that did everything under one roof – I would see one brand did cookies, one brand did spelt or kamut bread, one brand doing muffins and I said “why can’t you have one bakery doing all products and all organic?”

I didn’t have the money so we started in a small location in Brampton. We started with organic muffins and breads and everyone started asking for a variety of different products.

AM: So, how then did you get into gluten free products?

PY: People started coming in with a list of their allergies. I started developing yeast free breads, flatbreads, yeast free flavored breads like lemon loaf, corn bread. We didn’t have banana bread at that time because I thought everyone has banana bread so I didn’t want to make it (note: they have one now and it is delicious!)

Gluten Free Chocolate Cake

People were asking for sugar free and gluten free. So, I thought we should start doing gluten free. I researched gluten free and quickly realized I couldn’t bake gluten free and still offer other breads at the same time. We started baking gluten free early in the morning and then when everything was done we switched to other products in the afternoon. I quickly realized we had better go totally gluten free. We kept flatbread which is not gluten free but are phasing it out. It is currently prepared in separate location, and doesn’t need to go into oven but we won’t be making it for much longer.

AM: Who develops the recipes?

PY: For the first two years, me and my daughter who was in high school when I started this created all of the recipes. She just graduated from York U. She runs this Yonge/Lawrence store totally. I’m hands off here. I deliver in the morning and see what baked goods they need. She totally runs the store, orders supplies and scheduling. Another manager does hiring.

We develop them together. She did mainly sugar free cakes which are a big seller for us.

AM: Do you bake all products onsite?

PY: We have an oven here for small items, muffins & cookies. Everything else is baked in Brampton. We bake at night and bring the food here early in the morning.

AM: What time do you wake up?

PY: (Smiling) 4.00 am everyday except Saturday I sleep in until 6.00 am (laughing) I get here for 6.00 am but I’m usually a few minutes late.

AM: Wow, that’s early! How do you manage that?

PY: I work hard as I want my business to grow so I don’t sleep much.

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