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Make Food Your Business Podcast

Make Food Your Business Podcast

By Hope & Main
What you eat and drink is your business...but also theirs. Loyalty to local food brands is growing, but who are the people bold enough to attempt to disrupt a food system that is designed to favor big brands? Join Hope & Main, the award-winning food business incubator behind the launch of some of Rhode Island’s most beloved food and beverage brands, in candid conversations with New Englanders who are pioneering a new food landscape. Learn about innovative new products, culinary concepts, and who’s challenging the kitchen culture status quo.
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Currently playing episode

What We Eat is Who We Are: An Homage to Food Heritage

Make Food Your Business Podcast

What We Eat is Who We Are: An Homage to Food Heritage
IT'S OUR LAST EPISODE OF OUR FIRST SEASON! * * * * * * Most everyone can think of one person that had the most influence over the way we eat. Of all Hope & Main members, more than 20% are named after a family member (or pet) or pay homage to a certain culture or ethnicity. Everyone does it their own way and it’s not always obvious, but how we interact with others through food is often telling of our culture and family dynamics. We are fascinated by this, and thankfully are in a unique position to ask “why?” and “how?” to two entrepreneurs who’ve done it tastefully and successfully. In this episode we had a conversation with Schantel Maxine Neal (Maxine Baked) and Michelle Cheng (Ceremony Tea House, Leafy Green) about their upbringing, inspiration and outlooks - all as related to food. We wanted to know more about the people and places behind the inspiration for their brands, and what it took to translate those ideas into profitable businesses. Creating a business inspired by heritage foods requires bold moves on the part of the creator (and customers) - but our world is better off with a diversity of choices.
June 11, 2021
Getting to the heart of the DishUp RI initiative
The Restaurateur life is not for the faint of heart, and this conversation proves it.  When we reached out to local restaurants about participating in our DishUp RI restaurant-to-retail program we didn’t quite realize the gravity of the opportunity we were offering. It has been both humbling and inspiring to witness, and a true privilege to be a part of.  We spoke with Tony Lopez (Shasteâ) and Sanjiv Dhar (Chaska/Kebab and Curry/Rasa/Rasoi) about how they leveraged DishUp RI to go from a restaurant mindset to a retail mindset without compromising the details or thoughtfulness customers enjoy in-house.  Maintaining balance and embracing the strength of community is a common theme throughout this conversation, but the future of restaurants remains uncertain. In spite of this, however, there is a beautiful sense of optimism among some of the most stressed and struggling small business owners we know. To that point, Sanjiv and Tony both are shining examples of how restaurateurs who listen, remain compassionate and are willing to make strategic changes to stay relevant will be just fine. 
May 14, 2021
Cheers to Pivoting! The symbiotic serendipity in beer and food, in these Covid times
What do you do when there’s over 200 kegs of beer ready for distribution...and then all orders suddenly halt? Or when a year’s worth of pop up events have been cancelled all on one sweep? Small business owners were forced to rise to the occasion and adapt quickly throughout this past year. We wanted to find out what it took to survive, so we invited two of the heartiest and savviest food and beverage entrepreneurs we know: Shane Matlock (founder of The Burgundian) and Jeremy Ruff (founder and head brewer of LineSider Brewing). Listen in as we cover everything from checking egos to DIY and elbow grease to innovating new customer experiences that still feel familiar. The relationship between beer and food has stood the test of time, only now are they realizing the power they possess against something as daunting as a pandemic.
April 09, 2021
When we say "plant-based", you say..?
In this episode, a couple of Omnivores, a Pescatarian and some Vegans sit down to discuss how the popularity of plant-based diets is affecting the future of food. Ali & Caitlin are joined by Lyslie & Matty Medeiros (founders of Basil & Bunny) and Deane Sullivan (Merchandising Manager for Stop & Shop focused on Local and Multicultural strategy and assortment) to talk through everything from plant-based cheeses that actually taste good, to outworn stigmas, to family dinner dynamics.  Are we trying to get you to minimize and/or eliminate consumption of animal-derived products? Not unless you want to! We just want to share what we learned because there's no denying the amazing force that is the plant-based food movement!
March 12, 2021
Why does local food cost so much?
Ever wondered why jars of pasta sauce can range from $1 to $15? You’re not alone! The truth is, it’s complicated, but we’re going to talk through it with you. Our first episode kicks off aiming to answer this really important question. Joined by our nonprofit’s founder and fearless leader, Lisa Raiola and the founder of newly launched meal “experience” The Mosaic Table, Anat Sagi, we’re covering everything from defining “local food” to government-subsidized farming to economic impact, and more!
February 12, 2021
What the heck are we doing with a podcast?
Hosts Ali and Caitlin introduce Hope & Main's mission and explain what the heck they're doing hosting a podcast.
February 11, 2021