Profile 001: Michelle Pusateri - Nana Joes Granola
Tell us about your journey to create your brand/product.
Honestly, it started so innocently. I wanted to bring a whole-food-ingredient granola to the grocery store shelves. I was having sugar spikes and needed a granola that had the right amount of fat, fiber, and protein to sustain me. It was easy to make granola for myself but a challenge to mass produce it. Every single step of the way I have tried to stay true to who we were when I started the company.
How did you land on the name?
When I was younger, I always wanted to have a child named Joe, Josephine, Joey, etc. because both of my grandfathers are named Joseph. When I first thought about opening Nana Joes Granola, I thought, "This is my time!" When explaining my idea to my grandmother it became apparent I might want to mention her as well...When you get the look from an Italian grandmother you make fast moves to right your wrongs.
• Best advice you’ve received as a business owner?
Make sure you pay attention to what is happening in your field but never compare yourself to others’ successes. Take inventory of trends, traction, and always, always, support everyone.
• Who are your mentors?
Jeff Hanak from Nopa, Helen Russell from Equator Coffee, Traci Des Jardins, Sadie from Bread Srysly, Dafna from INNA Jam, Ted from New Barn, Alli Ball from Alli Ball Consulting...the list could go on forever. Each one of these people have brought me to where I am today. Sadie saves my life on the daily. Dafna came into my kitchen and helped me reorganize everything and without these two I might have just packed up shop. We seriously have those days y'all!
• What food or beverage are you enjoying most right now?
Eatwell veggies, INNA jam preserved Meyer lemons, Bread Syrsly, Just Date Syrup, Diaspora Co Turmeric, Obour Tahini with date molasses, and Green Girl Kitchen reishi chocolate ice cream cookie sandwiches when I am feeling extra special, Burlap and Barrel spices, and most importantly, my husband’s cooking. He wakes up every single morning at 5am to make me coffee and breakfast, then goes back to bed. That is love.
We’re honored to carry Nana Joes at Douglas. Visit https://www.nanajoes.com to learn more.