Artwork by Rob Svenšek
"In nature's economy the currency is not money, it is life."
Hey Starter Ladies & Gents,

There are milestones you hit in the business that feel significant and this month there are two of them. Hot damn!! A co-founder made official and thus the formation of a team, and the legal formation of the company (which pretty much means the government knows you exist so you get to pay taxes. ;) Let's start with the fun part why don't we, meet Marika Anderson, my new co-founder.   

It turned out it was the first question in our 34-question interview that solidified why she wanted to join the business. My answer: As an accidental entrepreneur now starting business #3, I learned that within capitalist America, if we want to do good and change the world, business is one of the best ways you can do it. The laws and resources flow in your favor. This is when it clicked for Marika to take a turn off the path she had been on in education (which was a world of swimming upstream) and merge onto the startup highway with me (in this case, a slow-moving, one lane highway on an island in the Pacific). I am elated she chose to join me, and I share more in this issue just why I am so pumped that half of our dyad is someone that's not from the business world. Diverse teams win, something that author Shane Snow breaks down in his book Dream Teams - the Starter Book Club pick this month. 

With our partnership established, it was time to legally form the company. Formation was pretty boring stuff for me at the outset. Reading over the driest business blogs talking about corporate tax law, womp womp… and my brain wants to quickly u-turn and go back to fun things like making ice cream and building the brand. Though, the deeper I have gone into the process, seeking my own understanding of the implications of each business entity type and how it supports the values I hold, it’s become a much more interesting process. In the venture-backed world of tech that I came from, a C-corp is the default standard, as to be able to issue shares to investors.

Was this right this go-around? What structure supports shared ownership with partners and employees? We don’t want to take on investors now. Should I plan for investors at some point with the company structure now? What are the tax implications? What liability do you take on as an owner in each entity structure? How much does it cost to form each company (our budget is tight)? Clearly lots of questions. TBH, the internet needs a lot of work making this info far easier to digest. In the end, we went with a Hawaii LLC - for its simplicity of setup, tax implications, liability implications, and ability to grant equity to founder partners.

Ok, so now that's out of the way! Back to the fun stuff. Ice cream flavors are starting to get dialed: coconut, chocolate, and tropical flavors like makrut lime & toasted coconut (and just in time for my 35th birthday tomorrow ;). Follow along on the 'gram as we share the latest flavor in the works. Sending the good vibes your way always.

In Good Food We Trust,


Meet my Co-founder, Marika Anderson
Marika and I met because we both became mothers at nearly the exact same time, our daughters both born in Kauai—a week apart. The ideal co-founder is a mix of things, shared values and vision, complementary skills, and most importantly—someone you enjoy spending a lot of time with. It’s also someone you hold in high regard and pushes you to be the best version of yourself. Marika is all of these things to me. Marika’s career has not come up through startups, but rather through graduate school at Harvard studying the neuroscience of learning and then as an interdisciplinary educator in new schools, building the startups of the education world. For me, it was refreshing to have someone who did not come up through business, offering a diverse perspective on the business.
Marika shares in her own words why she decided to take the leap into business. Read the full story
The Starter Pack
1. Bunches & Bunches - Smoked Mole Sauce: Should you take a trip to Oaxaca? Yes, yes you should. In the meantime, stoke the flames of your future culinary travel by enjoying this mole (that took home a Good Food Award) in your own kitchen, made with Oaxacan chilis, blended with tomatoes, spices, lime and cilantro.
2. Clio - Hazelnut Greek Yogurt Bar: it's about time someone reinvented greek yogurt bars. This one is light and fluffy, reminiscent of a slice of cheesecake.
3. Gem - Daily Vitamin: Bringing transparency to the vitamin world (note: didn't realize how f'ed up it is until I went down a rabbit hole). Gem's key ingredient is algae – like Spirulina, Chlorella, and Astaxanthin. Carbon neutral and nutritionally-dense, algae does wonders for your body and our earth. 
4. Blank Slate - Szechuan Chili Oil: This is my "desert island" condiment. Tingly, numbing, nuanced, complex...I can't get enough.
5. Bow Hill - Blueberry Juice: Organic blueberry juice made from varietals grown on 71-year-old bushes and then cold pressed--it's exactly what your non-alcoholic cocktail needs.
Meet Alli Ball our new Contributing Editor to The Starter Pack!
Alli Ball is the creator of Retail Ready™, an online course for food business owners who are looking to grow their packaged food businesses. Prior to that, Alli was the former Head of Grocery at Bi-Rite Market in San Francisco, where she supported the sales & growth of thousands of products. Find her on Instagram at @itsalliball.
🌈 The More You Know 🌈
There are several different types of entities to choose from. Please ignore the clip-art graphics.... the world of business entity blogs is not for the design-minded it seems ;). I was very tempted to design my own version, but my time was much better spent testing ice cream this week. Despite the design, I did find the information presented here to be straightforward and clear in comparing sole proprietorship, partnership, llc, and corporations (c, s and b corps). If you are making the decision for your business, check it out, it's a great breakdown. 
Read: This is the Best Restaurant in America
- Vogue
"The James Beard Foundation announced the winners of its eponymous awards. The most anticipated of all was Best Restaurant in America—the foodie equivalent of an Oscar. This year, the honor went to Zahav. Lauded in Philadelphia since 2008, Zahav serves up innovative (and delectable) Israeli cuisine." Read more.
STARTER SAYS: Congrats to all the winners for the 2019 James Beard Awards! - ELO
Read: Is Detroit Finally Getting a Black-Owned Grocery Store?
- Civil Eats
"We all have to eat, so having a grocery store in the community is a requirement. And you see the devastation of our neighborhoods—that’s partly because many of them don’t have grocery stores, or good ones. You get to see the DNA of a neighborhood with what type of grocery store it has.”  Read more.
STARTER SAYS: Good things happening in Detroit, a grocery store for the community, owned by the community. - ELO
Watch: Street Food - Asia
- Netflix
“If someone has to taste real food, authentic food, it has to be street food. There is a culture of eating outside, drinking outside, hanging outside. Always a party going. It’s a chaotic paradise of food. It’s a portal to a world of culinary heritage. People have been doing the same dish for 40-50 years, they never went to culinary school. In the city of ten million people, almost one million make a living by selling on the street. It takes a lot of strength and sacrifice."
STARTER SAYS: Yep, already watched them all. Feels timely with the release of the JBA awards, Street Food sits in stark contrast to the esteemed culinary world. A food business that in many ways is about survival above else.  - ELO
Starter Book Club: May

Dream Teams

By Shane Snow

I've built two teams of my own already, but this book opened up new ways of seeing team dynamics. "The Zone of Possibility" - this is the place where creativity thrives for teams according to Snow, and it takes just the right tension amongst teams to stay in the zone. Snow breaks down the important roles of conflict and collaboration and how "The Zone of Possibility" propelled teams like the The Wu-Tang Clan and the Russian Five Hockey Team to greatness.
Get your copy and follow along at @thestartermag where I'll share my aha moments and highlighted passages.
Between the Issues on the 'gram
ICYMI: Every month we continue the conversation on the 'gram, these are our most loved posts last month. If you are aren't following us yet, get on it!
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