How This Mom Is Using Her Business To Transform The Food Culture in Alberta

Karen Anderson is changing the image of Calgary from “cowtown” to one of Canada’s finest food cities. The self-proclaimed “momtrepreneur” started Alberta Food Tours, after having established a friend circle of farmers, chefs, and foodies.  Last year, she organized 169 tours for more than 1000 guests. She’s found a niche and a business in promoting sustainable agriculture through tourism.

“I could see that more and more people were traveling with the intent of trying local cuisines, and exploring the food culture of a city,” she says, driving down one of Calgary’s main throughways, the Macleod Trail. “But Calgary never had a reputation as being a foodie city, like Vancouver. So how could we change that?”

Read the full story at Forbes.

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Why Two Norwegian Entrepreneurs Put $1.5 Million Towards Slow Travel In Fjord Country

 

Set in Norway’s majestic fjord country, Flam is a town about 230 inhabitants. Yet in one year it will see about half a million visitors and nearly 200 cruise ships — ships so big they drown out the few small hotels situated on the waterfront. At the base of a UNESCO World Heritage site, Flam and its nearby residents are concerned about the number of tourists descending on the small, picturesque village.

Last year, Fjord Norway, the tourism office for the region, told the Telegraph that they were encouraging hotels to increase rates in the summer months, hoping that would push tourists to come in the off season.  What’s causing the increased interest?  Namely two factors: Disney’s animated film Frozen, which showcased Norway’s beauty and culture, and social media, particularly Instagram, where pictures of the stunning scenery are drawing thousands of ‘likes.’

Two Norwegians, however, have taken it upon themselves to offer tourists a different kind of experience in the fjords — one that builds on Norway’s love for slow TV, slow food, and all things Sakte (Norwegian for slow).  But will the rest of the world catch on as well?

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“We want to be a sustainable alternative to cruise tourism,” Tone Ronning says. “It’s a contradiction. Once you become a World Heritage site, you get more crowds, and it becomes a lost paradise. We don’t want that to happen here.”

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Read the full story at Forbes.com

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Holiday Gift Guide That Goes Beyond Deals: 15 Brands That Leave A Long-Term, Social Impact

Black Friday means long lines, parking nightmares, and sub-par deals. Yet a new crop of entrepreneurs, more suited for Small Business Saturday than the insanity of Black Friday, are offering more than just deals.  Here’s a holiday gift guide that doesn’t require a trip to mall and supports a new kind of economy — driven by equity and empathy as well as profit.

See the full list at Forbes.com.

After Pampering Celebs In Hollywood, This Entrepreneur Is Ready To Take On The Goliaths Of Beauty

Celebrities don’t want you to know that they’re using other beauty products than the ones they endorse, Jean Seo, a skin care expert to Hollywood stars, says.

Seo has spent the last decade catering to the who’s who of Beverly Hills with her anti-aging skin care line, Èvoluè.  But now she’s launching a more affordable option, Luè, which is already available on Amazon and her own site.  Made of natural, and often organic ingredients, Seo’s new line is as much a business as it is a defiant gesture to the goliaths of the beauty industry. 

“Skin care in America is really messed up.  These companies have so much money for advertising that they make you think you need all this.  When in reality, it’s just an ugly cycle to get you to buy more and more,” she says.

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Jean Seo of Lue and Evolue, two brands made of natural, organnic ingredients, sourced from around the world.  Photo Courtesy of Subject.

Read the full story on Forbes.com

Meet the Scientist Who Just Broke a Major Barrier for Black Women

Chemotherapy is notoriously hard on patients. It works by pumping powerful drugs into the body in hopes of killing the disease. To reduce the nasty side effects of cancer treatment, Hadiyah-Nicole Green, a 35-year-old physicist, wants to research using laser technology to kill cancer—and she just won $1.1 million to do it.

Green, an assistant professor at Tuskegee University, is the first woman to win the five-year grant geared toward nurturing black scientists from the Veterans Administration Research Scientist Training Program. She hopes to help change the perception of what black girls can aspire to.

“When someone says scientist, I want them to think of someone other than Albert Einstein,” Green told TakePart.

Read the full story at TakePart.com.

Why This Photographer Took 12 Years To Shoot Coffee Growers Around The Globe

This photographer took 12 years to complete his latest project on what he calls “one of the most important products we trade in the world.”  It’s well worth the wait.

Sebastião Salgado, a renowned photographer from Brazil, partnered with Illy, the Italian coffeehouse, to document the world’s coffee-growers. A beautiful coffee table book, titled the Scent of a Dream: Travels in the World of Coffee, debuted earlier this year, featuring intimate images of coffee farmers from far corners of the globe: China, India, Ethiopia, Guatemala, Costa Rica, and more.

Andrea Lilly , CEO of Illycaffe, visited Salgado at the Instituto Terra, a research center and reforestation program started by Salgado in his native Brazil, in 2002.  Illy quickly became a partner, trying to resurrect a seemingly dead swath of land into a thriving forest.  Lilly  was as interested in Salgado’s environmental pursuits as his artistic talent.

“When I first met with Salgado, I fell in love with his photographs and his story,” Lilly  writes in the forward of the book.  “His project became ours.  And ours became his: a project founded on a shared dream of respect for the environment and its people through the ideals of kindness, beauty, and justice.”

Shortly after their meeting, and discussion about sustainable coffee growing practices, Salgado took on the task of capturing the stories of these families in partnership with Illy.

Ready the full story at Forbes.com.

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Photo Courtesy of Subject. Book cover.

All photos credited to: (c) Sebastião Salgado/Amazonas Images

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This Radio Station Crowdfunded €363,000 to Financial Stability

“Even the president of Estonia wanted to save us,” says Aleksi Pahkala, one of the producers at Radio Helsinki.  He isn’t kidding.  He works at one of the most beloved radio stations in the region.

Public radio is struggling globally, it seems.  Radio Helsinki, one of the largest Nordic radio stations (in terms of listeners — about 115,00 each week), faced its demise over a year ago.  Sanoma, a Helsinki-based media company that owns several leading newspapers, decided to stop funding Radio Helsinki, back in 2013.  The Helsinki Sanomat, the country’s most read newspaper, had featured Radio Helsinki in their Friday content every week; but that ended too, Pahkala says, when the company backed away.

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Aleksi Pahkala, in front of Radio Helsinki HQ.  Photo Credit: Esha Chhabra

To raise money, Radio Helsinki did the rounds with investors who Pahkala says had no interest in reviving a dying media house.

“Big money people were laughing at us. Why would we buy it?  We are not going to get any profit from it,” he says, sitting in their eccentrically-decorated offices in Teurastamo, a trendy new area of Helsinki outside the city center.

What could have been another sad tale of death in media, miraculously, has became a success story and provides hope for independent journalism.  When the Sanomat dusted off Radio Helsinki, producers gave up on top-dollar investors and turned to crowdfunding to save the city’s iconic radio station, known for gutsy journalism and showcasing new musical talent.

Read the full story at Forbes.com.