PANAMA CITY— Jessica Tharp’s goal to bring a healthy food option to Bay County will be fulfilled Friday when she launches her new business concept.
Melted Honey is clean, healthy eating through environmentally-minded practices and simple ingredients, Tharp said. The concept focuses on nourish ball bites, which provide filling supplements of scratch peanut butter, oats, organic components and local honey.
Tharp’s idea to start Melted Honey was formed when she saw a need for more healthy food concepts in the local area. Earlier this year, she moved forward with her decision to start a business and will now hold frequent pop-up markets.
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“I’ve been in Bay County for two years, and there really aren’t many health food restaurants or options in Bay County,” said Tharp, an Orlando native. “And instead of complaining and waiting around for that to change, I thought, ‘Why not do it myself?’ So I wanted to start from the bottom and grow from there.”
Melted Honey will host its first pop-up market Friday from 5-9 pm behind History Class Brewing Company, 6 E. Fourth St. in downtown Panama City. The market’s offerings include two options of nourish balls: chocolate peanut butter, which features cold-pressed cacao powder, rolled oats, Medjool dates and housemade peanut butter; and oatmeal raisinwhich features rolled oats, housemade peanut butter, organic maple syrup and organic raisins.
A second pop-up market will take place June 24 from 5-9 pm at the Downtown Boxing Club, 320 Luverne Ave., with a new nourish ball added to the selection: lemon coconutwhich will feature shredded coconut, almonds, local honey and lemon zest.
Pre-ordering is available at www.melted-honey.com, or you can buy from the pop-up market, but pre-ordering guarantees your order. Tharp said she plans to announce more dates for pop-up markets on social media and expand the menu as time goes on.
“This is the model I want to start with, and it’s a different idea for the area, but I wanted to try something new with the pop-up markets,” Tharp said. “My goal is to connect with other businesses and create forward momentum in this community that wasn’t here before of health awareness.”
Melted Honey products are made from fresh ingredients. Tharp said she thought of the name Melted Honey because of the imagery it brings to one’s mind, and her main objective was to start a business tied to her passion.
As the company grows, she hopes to create stories with her product to highlight local environmental efforts that residents can participate in and actively make a difference. By her side for the entire journey, Tharp receives supportive feedback from her partner Rob Shaw and daughter Jade.
“There’s a lot of small environmental organizations and businesses that often get swept under the rug, but generally, we’re using Melted Honey to bring awareness to these community environmental programs already in place,” Shaw said.
“We’re all very excited about this, and we’re going to support her no matter what,” Jade said. “I think the idea is awesome and can’t wait to be a part of it.”
Tharp said she hopes the success of her pop-up markets will lead her to operate her small business out of a food truck within the next year.
However, her ultimate goal is to open a Melted Honey storefront in Bay County, where she can expand the offerings to items produced to order, such as smoothie bowls, fresh juice mocktails, chia puddings, topped toasts and savory meal bowls.
“Most everything you can find at local stores and restaurants, but it’s the time and effort that make people avoid healthier food options,” Tharp concluded. “I want to create an option for people that’s quick and easy for them, so they don’t have to worry about making it for themselves.”