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Interview with Kuli Kuli

Emma Giloth is the field market coordinator for Kuli Kuli Foods, a for-profit organization that introduced moringa oleifora, a nutritious plant food, into nutrition bars and powders. Kuli Kuli works with works with women-owned farming cooperatives in West Africa as well. In this interview, Giloth explains Kuli Kuli’s mission and her interests and specific role within the company.

Tell us a little bit about your life, your interests, and your hobbies?

Emma: My hobbies are tied in with my work… I consider myself an entrepreneur, specifically a social entrepreneur, and I have been passionate about working with social entrepreneur since college. I was always interested in volunteering, working in the homeless shelters, and then when I got the opportunity to go abroad, I got really interested in doing that on an international level. And, when I went to school I studied international development and economics, I was really interested in West Africa. [I studied aborad in] Senegal, which is a West African country, and living there got me very excited about social enterprise, because when you start to see how many nonprofit organizations or charities exist but there is not a great system of how they are getting money… got me thinking, “Why aren’t there social businesses?” That is sort of a general overview where this interest came but I ended up going back to Senegal for four years and started working with an environmental youth group and did some superfood companies around coconuts, so I got very interested in what kind of superfoods Africa had to offer and work[ing] with farmers to help them get those raw ingredients to remarket. [Those are] my interests in social enterprise and supporting, not just in Africa, but a lot of the global send out in terms of getting their products or materials to a market so they actually can make money and keep that compassion in mind. In terms of hobbies I really like to travel, I am really interested in permaculture. [Also] different ways of gardening and being connected with nature, so I also like hikes, all of that good outdoorsy stuff.

What is Kuli Kuli Foods? What is its mission?

Emma: We are a for profit company [and] a company that makes natural food products, specifically superfood products out of moringa and our mission is to use nutrient rich plants including moringa, as a tool to improve livelihoods worldwide and we are aiming to do that by being the leading provider of moringa products in the United States. We take the leaves [from moringa trees] we dry them. Then we sell it as a powder form, as a supplement. You can add it whatever you are cooking or [you can buy it] in bars or these moringa green energy shots, which are sort of like a caffeinated green smoothie shot for people looking for a superfood version of a 5 hour energy. We are also coming out with our moringa greens protein powder. There are lots of ways you can consume moringa by itself. We want to make it easy for people to get healthy superfoods the easy way. A lot of people aren’t making full meals right now, they are busy, on the go; we want to make it easy for people to get their greens by making grab and go products out of moringa.

What is exactly your specific role as a field market coordinator?

Emma: My role is a little bit beyond, it’s more like a marketing - I do all sorts of marketing. But field marketing consists of managing our brand ambassador program - one way that we’ve been able to build our business is through people who believe in us and who like our products and who will share that with other people. Brand ambassadors include what we call our field marketing team, which are our staff that go into Whole Foods or other stores to do little demos. They’ll go to events, a lot of times its vegetarian events because Moringa is very popular, or a lot of yoga events. We’re bringing new to the market, which is exciting, but it’s also a lot of education and teaching people how to use it, what it’s used for, which is one of the challenges we’ve had as a company. We also have our content marketing team, which is what you guys do, which is [hosting a] blog with a lot of content that we’ve been able to build up through a blog team for about 2 and a half years. We got a lot of interested college students originally, who were excited about the social mission of a brand and decided to work with us to promote moringa and healthy living and other topics that we think our audience would like. So we have a blog [and] a whole blog team to work with across the country, who writes different [posts]. We are now working with influencers on social media who like our product and are excited to try it or post a picture of their favorite recipe. I also do a lot of events [and] whenever we get into a new store, I figure out what the different tactics are to make it a success and teach [our] customers about Kuli Kuli and Moringa.

Learn more about Kuli Kuli and how YOU can get involved here!

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