Friday, March 29, 2013

Innovation Kitchen creating great foods and great business opportunities

Our Innovation Kitchen model creates great business opportunities for food entrepreneurs and farms.

I love that the first recipe suggestion in this article is a delicious bloody Mary mix made with local tomato juice!

"Happy Valley Farm’s tomato juice is prepared at the Wisconsin Innovation Kitchen in Mineral Point using just the farm’s organic tomatoes, lemon juice and salt."

The Wisconsin Innovation Kitchen continues to pioneer great new models for small-batch, professional food processing that supports food entrepreneurs and farms.

Got a great idea for a small food business?  Join us!

Article - In season:  Tomato juice., 77 Square.   Article by Samara Kalk Derby

Short (1:26) video interview with Kevin Lucey of Happy Valley Farms discussing the role of the Innovation Kitchen

Thursday, March 28, 2013

Milwaukee first U.S. city to adopt global model for boosting startups

I love Milwaukee.

It's a city of great opportunities.

A new entrepreneurship initiative is being launched in Milwaukee that I look forward to following and supporting.

"Milwaukee will be the first city in the U.S. to develop an entrepreneurship program using a Boston professor’s model that has helped boost entrepreneurial “ecosystems” in cities in Colombia, Brazil, Denmark and other countries."

"Isenberg said the tipping point for success, roughly, is achieving one successful entrepreneurial venture per 100,000 residents each year in a particular community.

'It doesn’t happen overnight,' Isenberg said."

Milwaukee first U.S. city to adopt global model for boosting startups.   The Business Journal serving greater Milwaukee.  Written by Jeff Engel.

Photo is the Lake Michigan facing architecture of the wonderful Milwaukee Art Museum 

Thanks to Michael Ward of US Bank for this link.

Saturday, March 23, 2013

Great Gray Owls and entrepreneurship. Show up. Shut up. Work for luck.

I was a dinosaur and fossil kid (still am).   I lamented the demise of dinosaurs.  I dreamed about meeting one.

Sometime during my childhood, scientists realized that birds were dinosaurs.

Birds survived the destruction of their dinosaur kin 60+ million years ago.  And they're all around us.


When I need to think straight, I go hang out with dinosaurs.  They're all cool.

Great Gray Owls are the largest owl in the world (by length) and have the longest wingspan of any owl in the world.  They are also very hard to see. 
Luck is a beautiful thing.  This year, I've been able to see not only my first Great Gray Owl, but a second one six days later.

The first sighting was in a beautiful rural setting in central Wisconsin.  The second sighting was in my own city (Middleton, WI) this week.  Amazing.

Entrepreneurship can be an ever-increasing wall of noise.  Your job is to sort it out in real time.

For me, the only way to do that is to find some quiet love in your life.

Quiet places in your  life are critical.  You need to show up, shut up, and work for luck.  It will make your life better and your entrepreneurship more sustainable.

Wikipedia - Great Gray Owls

Photos taken with standard handheld digital camera.

Tuesday, March 19, 2013

My Kiva update - 40 loans to entrepreneurs in 33 countries

I just made my 40th loan through Kiva.  I've now made small loans to entrepreneurs in 33 countries.

The loan I made today supports the work of a food entrepreneur in Liberia. 

I love Kiva.  They are a great lending organization.

Kiva just crossed an amazing milestone- over one million loans worldwide.  Congratulations Kiva!

Here is what they say about their work:

"We are a non-profit organization with a mission to connect people through lending to alleviate poverty. Leveraging the internet and a worldwide network of microfinance institutions, Kiva lets individuals lend as little as $25 to help create opportunity around the world."

Here is my current portfolio of 33 countries where I've chosen to support entrepreneurs through my small loans:

Costa Rica
Dominican Republic
El Salvador
Viet Nam

The lifeblood of entrepreneurship and economic development is access to capital and the creation of viable business environments.  If you want to make a globally relevant impact with small amounts of money, I recommend Kiva.

Kiva Blog:  One Million Borrowers!  March 18, 2013.  Congratulations Kiva!  Congratulations Kiva borrowers!

If you let me invite you to Kiva they will give us both $25 for free to lend to entrepreneurs of our choice. 

Wednesday, March 13, 2013

Fast Company - World's 50 Most Innovative Companies

One of my last startup companies was awarded Fast Company Magazine's Fast 50 Award in 2004.

Their award is now called The World's 50 Most Innovative Companies.

Our small startup band of warriors invented, patented, built, sold and successfully deployed some of the most innovative industrial water treatment systems in the world.  We built a globally relevant new business from scratch and developed an important new market.  I'm still very grateful for and proud of this recognition from Fast Company Magazine.

The new Fast Company list of the World's 50 Most Innovative Companies is out.  It's a great collection of stories... people changing the world through innovation and intense customer focus.

Opportunities for innovation occur in every industry, no matter how big or small your enterprise.  Who will be on the list for 2014?  Maybe you!

Fast Company Magazine.  The World's 50 Most Innovative Companies.

Our 2004 Fast Company Magazine Fast 50 Award

Saturday, March 09, 2013

SustainableWork pageviews - 100,000+

This was a good week for the blog.

SustainableWork will have been published for 8 years next month.

I started writing this while I was running our last business (engineering), largely to talk about what we'd done in our previous business (graphics/printing).

Now I'm working in and writing about new opportunities in food entrepreneurship.

Visitors to SustainableWork have jumped with the writing about food entrepreneurs and economic development.

This week the blog went over a nice pageview milestone.

Thanks to all visitors and friends!

Monday, March 04, 2013

Innovation Kitchen partner featured on

Congratulations to Innovation Kitchen partner Food Your Body Likes!

Their great Cereal Revolution line of foods is now featured on

Cereal Revolution will be available for another few days.  Then will feature their amazing Yumbutter line.

Congratulations Matt and Adrian! 

Here is a quote:

"Like you, we believe in the goodness of the human spirit. Our potions embody flavors as bold as world peace that wow your taste buds, rock your mouth, and dish out the energy your body needs to live the dream. Welcome to the Cereal Revolution."

Thank you Food Your Body Likes!  We are celebrate your food preparation partnership with our Wisconsin Innovation Kitchen!   Food Your Body Likes.  Healthy Cereal Your Body Needs

Matt D’Amour & Adrian Reif, Chief Revolutionaries, Food Your Body Likes 

Innovation Kitchens