BELDING — Whether it’s a shake, energizing tea or protein coffee, Flat River Nutrition has the healthy beverage you’re looking for to start your day off right.
About a month ago, Andy and Wanda Hoisington opened Flat River Nutrition inside Leppinks Food Center in Belding.
The idea to start the business, Wanda told the Daily News, came from their daughter, who owns Hometown Healthies in Greenville.
“I had worked at Ventra in Ionia for about 25 years,” Wanda explained. “I started working there alongside my daughter during COVID, as she was doing all take-out and delivery orders. I loved meeting people and it really became a great opportunity for me.”
Wanda originally offered to start permanently working at Hometown Healthies but was eventually convinced to open a separate store in Belding.
Flat River Nutrition offers Herbalife Nutrition and Abundant Life Foods products — companies that Wanda says promote the ideas of healthy living and weight loss.
“I came across Herbalife a long time ago when a woman I know wanted to know if I wanted to join her weight-loss challenge,” she explained. “With the products, you can either gain weight, if you want to, or you can lose weight. It all depends on how you want to use it. For me, I make one of the healthy shakes every morning and that’s my breakfast.”
Shake flavors include peanut butter pie, blueberry pancake and cinnamon toast crunch to orange pineapple banana, frosted animal cracker and fruity pebbles.
Energizing teas often include a mix of fruity flavors, including strawberry margarita, sweet summer chai, watermelon blow pop and more.
“The teas really give you a huge burst of energy,” Wanda said. “You’ve got kids drinking Monster (Energy) for that fix, but this has more vitamins and minerals in it and will still giving you that same amount of energy.”
Lattes, natural teas, protein coffee, naturally naked beverages and cheesecakes are also available.
The process of starting Flat River Nutrition upon the inception of the idea, Andy says, took only about two months.
“We knew that we wanted to do something here in Belding, we just couldn’t find a building,” he recalled. “One day, we were walking out of Leppinks, I got in the truck, looked over at the building and thought ‘duh.’ I came in to talk to (owner John Leppink), we worked out a deal and here we are.”
Since opening, Andy says that business has been steady and rapidly picking up every week.
“(Hometown Healthies’) business has been so good and we’re starting to pick up on that,” he said. “I told my wife that, since we’re still young and there’s nothing else like this in Belding, we might as well jump on this and see what can happen.”
For Wanda, Flat River Nutrition is an inspiring way to promote healthy living within the community as much as it is a business.
“We’re going to do some weight-loss challenges and everything as we go along,” she said. “If anybody wants to get healthy, come try us out.”
Hours are currently 7 a.m. to 5 p.m. Mondays through Fridays, 8 a.m. to 3 p.m. on Saturdays and 8 a.m. to 2 p.m. on Sundays. Those hours may change when the business hires additional help, as Wanda and Andy are currently the only two employees at Flat River Nutrition.
“We’ve also got a punchcard for our regular customers,” Wanda added. “At the end, once you fill it all out, you get to spin a wheel to see what kind of prize you got.”