8 Successful Art-ternative Entrepreneurs

8 Successful Art-ternative Entrepreneurs

Emily Badger | Good

Name: Nathalie Jordi Project: People’s Pops Years at it: Two

Nathalie Jordi had never made a popsicle when she volunteered to prepare and sell hundreds of them in 2008 for the opening of a new artisanal food market in New York City. “How hard can it be?” she thought at the time, especially if she made them with the most basic ingredients: simple syrup and seasonal fruit from the local farmers’ market.

Jordi teamed up with a couple of friends, and her one-off weekend experiment has since grown into a serious business, with a seasonal shop in the Chelsea Market and regular sales to Whole Foods. Each partner put in $2,000 when no bank would give them a line of credit. Now they make thousands of pops a week, in creative combinations like rhubarb jasmine, raspberry basil, and watermelon lemongrass.

“I studied anthropology in college. I was so ill-equipped,” Jordi, 28, says. Of the name’s inspiration, she says, “They’re just made by us, they’re not made by some corporation. I liked the way it sounded. I liked the fact that it had vaguely revolutionary roots. It felt like this whole movement I was taking part in—local food, sustainable food—was such a radical departure from conventional food and agribusiness.” And a radical departure from a world in which (seriously) “Popsicle” is the trademark of a multinational conglomerate.

Art by Lauren Temaki

Next: No. 2: A Messy Workspace →

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