Specialty Food Magazine

FALL 2019

Specialty Food Magazine is the leading publication for retailers, manufacturers and foodservice professionals in the specialty food trade. It provides news, trends and business-building insights that help readers keep their businesses competitive.

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Mohammed and Rahim Diallo, co-founders, Ginjan Bros Mohammed and Rahim Diallo look back fondly on the days they would take breaks from their classes in Conakry, Guinea, and buy lunch from nearby street vendors. The food each vendor sold was different, but they all sold the same drink: a refreshing juice made from ginger that has been enjoyed in Africa for thousands of years. After moving to the U.S. in their teens, the brothers became aware of a distinct lack of African products on American shelves. "We started to notice that you can find products from all over the world but hardly anything from the African continent," says Rahim. "When you can find them, they're niche products that at best try to attach some sort of poverty-alleviating marketing cause to help move product, instead of focusing on highlighting all the amazing products and the creative ways in which they're made." In 2015, after years of research and development, the brothers created Ginjan, a cold-pressed beverage made from pure and organic ginger named after their lunchtime beverage as children. Ginjan can be consumed hot, cold, or mixed into a cocktail. It is currently available at 90 stores in the New York City metro area, as well as Whole Foods Market stores across NYC and Long Island. The beverage is also sold on drinkginjan.com in six- and 12-pack quantities along with a monthly subscription option. The opening of The Ginjan Cafe in Harlem, New York, earlier this year marked another milestone for the brothers. The cafe showcases local and African-made products including coffee, juices, beer and wine, and some food offerings. —A.F. Ages: 33 and 35 Elevate African gastronomy with traditional products and cafe showcase PHOTO: AUBRIE PICK Sana Javeri Kadri, founder, Diaspora Co. When Sana Javeri Kadri, 25, who was raised in Mumbai, India, tasted her first (and last) turmeric latte in San Francisco in 2016, she was unpleasantly surprised by the taste. But the experience wasn't all bad: it led to the launch one year later of Diaspora Co., which she describes as a queer, woman-of-color–owned, online spice-importing business that "moves forth in the spirit of social justice." Conducting research in the U.S. and abroad, Javeri Kadri learned that America's turmeric importers and customers weren't receiving a quality product, while India's spice farmers were facing challenges due to middlemen in the import business. After a crash course at the Indian Institute of Spices, Javeri Kadri met a farmer who was growing an heirloom variety of turmeric—and storing it organically—and her busi- ness, which endeavors to put money, equity, and power into the hands of Indian farmers, took off. Today, she buys the harvest of four organic farmers and has added cardamom, chili, ginger, and pepper to her product line. Diaspora Co. has grown from a company of one to five people and has published a turmeric recipe zine. Recipe books for each product will follow. Meanwhile, Javeri Kadri confronts challenges head-on. Her farmers have never worked with a woman, so she starts the relationships by providing her purchasing data. In fact, nothing in Javeri Kadri's background prepared her to be an entrepreneur, she admits, "but you're making up the solutions and there's a fun to that. That doesn't mean I wasn't crying two hours ago, but I consistently reach out to other women entrepreneurs and am willing to learn from anybody."—Rayna Katz Age: 25 Improves spice trade with an emphasis on social justice PHOTO: CHRISTINA NUZZO FALL 2019 29 12 under 35

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