Resilient Foods: CASE Launch Pad Winner Michelle Egger is Addressing Food Disparities
1 in 8 Americans in 2017 weren’t sure where their next meal would come from and were faced with an impossible choice; how am I going to pay to live and afford to feed my family. In a land rife with opportunity it is unacceptable we still experience our neighbors silently suffering. Our current food manufacturing and company models of the world favor profits over nutrition and access and we at Resilient Foods look to combat that head-on.
From Food Scientist to Food Activist
As a food scientist, double-digit shareholder profit just wasn’t getting me up in the morning. Looking to have an impact, I worked with a non-profit technical consulting group in my free time. One day, I was on a call telling my client we had issues with a project when she informed me that on a suggestion I had made a year back, she had been inspired to apply for a large grant, which she had just received. As of today, the dairy co-op owners in that region have installed over 100 milk chillers throughout rural Ethiopia and not only are families making money on their milk 24 hours a day, milk shelf life has increased from 3 to 28 days post-pasteurization.
Overwhelmed by what my actions catalyzed, I quit my job and applied for business school to start combatting food insecurity actively. I still don’t know exactly what I want to be when I grow up, but I learned that day, and am reminded daily working with my team on Resilient Foods, exactly how I want to feel all the time. Social responsibility isn’t just a line of corporate schmoozing; it is what we live and gamble on as social entrepreneurs every single day.
What is Resilient Foods?
Resilient Foods is a 1:1 food company, connecting online purchasers with healthy snacks via our platform and sending the identical item or box to someone in need. The name is inspired by the ecological definition of resilience in the environment; overcoming and adapting to cataclysmic shock like forest fires, landslides, earthquakes. We all in times of need require moments of resilience to bounce back from trauma and in this way, sharing a snack or meal can allow someone experiencing food insecurity to focus not on where their next meal comes from, but rather what they must do to overcome long-term hunger and poverty.
Born and raised in Minneapolis, MN, I started my career at General Mills as a Food Scientist until I started my MBA in 2018. Always passionate about food insecurity and hunger both in the US and abroad, I came to Fuqua to find a way to have a larger impact on the world around me and am concentrating in Social Entrepreneurship. I believe access to healthy food is a human right and that business must have a vital role in bringing great options to all of humanity. I love to invite strangers over for dinner, travel with family and friends to absorb the food cultures of the world, work on my start-up Resilient Foods, and hang with my dog in the woods.