Profile of Success: The Fruits of Wild Labor
What about the business appeals to Rashid?
• Living life the way he wants to: “Getting into this business [let me] live a certain kind of life,” Rashid says. “I value living in a small town here on Lake Michigan, and being relatively independent.”
• Creating something new: Rashid says that he loves developing new products and ways of featuring these products in his catalog and stores. “We say every taste tells a story,” he says, “and it’s a real pleasure to feel that you’re thrilling customers with new products that bring enjoyment to their lives.”
Hobbies: Rashid’s love of the outdoors leads him to enjoy cross-country skiing, hiking and swimming. “From June 1 through the first week of October, I swim almost every day in Lake Michigan,” he says. He’s also a voracious reader, as he points out that “the winters [in Michigan] are very conducive to reading.”
His favorite wild foods: Although he started picking berries early in life, Rashid says he now enjoys foraging for and eating wild mushrooms.
Headquarters: Petoskey, Mich.
Primary merchandise: preserved fruits and condiments
# of SKUs: 200
Customer demographics: 66 percent women, college educated, well traveled, with incomes in excess of $80,000
Sales channels: catalog, 33 percent; Internet, 33 percent; wholesale, 33 percent
# of employees: 50