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When Ishy asked me if I could write a blog post to summarise our 13 years on YouTube, I had to say… no. To try and condense 13 years of this life-changing adventure into a few hundred words could only possibly result in a feeble tribute to this amazing movement we’ve built.

So instead, I’ve opted to share just a handful of highlights from the last 13 years of our journey…

  1. Let’s start at the beginning

If you’ve seen the very early videos on the Sorted Food channel, you’d be forgiven for thinking that they look like they were filmed in a barn. And that’s because they were. Barry’s dad’s friend let us take up some space in a barn and build the cheapest of cheap kitchens to film our ‘little internet videos’ in. The four of us, along with our wider group of friends, spent our evenings and weekends mucking about in the barn, trying our hardest to distract Ben from actually teaching us how to cook some really simple, delicious dishes. 

As the videos went on, the group of friends on screen dwindled as everyone went off and got girlfriends and ‘real’ jobs - accountants, bankers, surgeons, social workers… The list goes on! I’m proud to say that most of them still watch every video and inspire a lot of the humour you see on the channel from our regular (probably drunken!) catch ups.

  1. Growing a community

We’re constantly asked what the difference between an ‘audience’ and a ‘community’ is… For me, it’s about participation and being on the same level as each other. We learn far more from our community than any knowledge we’ve ever tried to give out… Come on, we’re not *that* bright! Haha!

From day one, Sorted was about a conversation between friends, and as more people joined in the conversation got bigger. A few years into the journey, YouTube told us that we were the most engaged cooking channel on YouTube… globally. We didn’t have the most subscribers, we didn’t get the most views, but we had the biggest (and in my opinion, the best!) conversations of anyone else, including the YouTube-funded channels and old school celebrity chefs who had started making their way on to the platform. We were astonished, but not surprised… We knew we were building something special.

In 2015 we thought we’d put the power of the community to the test and launched our “Lost and Hungry World Tour” - starting with 3 months travelling around the USA, using only our community’s recommendations to choose where to go and what to eat. It was a mammoth undertaking, but meeting members of the community in towns and cities across 14 states was an unbelievable experience that we’ll never forget. Unfortunately, we weren’t able to find a way to fund the next destinations of that ‘World’ tour, but maybe one day we could try again??

  1. Growing a team

I don’t think we’ve ever fitted the mould of what’s now become a ‘standard’ setup for online creators/influencers. With the 4 of us approaching the work that needs to be done from different areas of expertise - food, photography, marketing, video production - we didn’t feel the need to reach outside and find managers or agents, we just got on and did it ourselves. As things grew, we found more people to jump in and help us in the areas we were lacking and they became part of our own team, rather than outsourcing projects to others.

Not many people take this approach because it’s usually the longer and harder way of doing it, but we knew that we weren’t doing this to become ‘famous’ or create a ‘flash in the pan’ that would die down as soon as it rose up… We wanted to make something that we could be proud of, that would stand the test of time and still help people for years to come. 

It sounds odd to say this as an online creator, but I still don’t think we’ve ever gone viral… And we’re really happy about that. 

We’re constantly adapting what we do to the world around us, and it’s amazing to see videos on new platforms like TikTok take off and find new audiences… How do we know they’ve found new audiences? The comments section looks very very different! Haha! 

  1. What’s next?

The community we’ve all built together is sensational, the team we’ve built around us is incredible… So what’s next?

We want to keep finding new ways to have an impact on how people around the world cook, eat and interact with food. It’s no understatement to say that the world is going through some massive challenges right now, and food plays a central role in many of them. The more ways we can strengthen our bond with the community and bring more people together around the awesomeness of food, the more we can all smile, laugh, learn and improve… And what is life without those simple pleasures?

So from all of us at Sorted Food HQ, a massive thank you to you for being on this journey with us… We may be becoming teenagers, but we have no plans to grow up anytime soon. We can’t wait to share the next chapter with you!!


Psst, to celebrate you on our birthday, we're hosting our BIGGEST sale yet across the store! We're talking apparel, chef jackets, cookbooks, and more - check it out HERE.

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