Creating Social Value Blog / Food

The Power of Food, Questions, and Connections

Wednesday, October 17, we will celebrate Babson Food Day, the culminating moment of Food Sol’s year-round ambition to catalyze connections and opportunities for food entrepreneurs of all kinds.

That may sound great, but vague also. Here are just two examples.

At Food Day 2017, Nadine Habayeb (center, in white) listens to insight from Nancy Cushman (far right) and Ed Doyle (far left).

Nadine’s story

Last year, Nadine Habayeb MBA’17 pitched a strategic question at the Quick Service Incubator. Crowdsourcing ideas in response to her question were Food Sol Senior Fellows Ed Doyle and Nancy Cushman, alongside students, alumni, and members of the general public. Six months later, in April, Bohana launched. By summer, Bohana’s unique snack foods were getting rave reviews in Self and Washington Post.

“Food Sol gave us not only the tools to build a food business and opened the doors to an incredible group of professionals in the industry (many of whom became our advisors),” says Habayeb. “But also the intangible support and encouragement that we could turn our idea into a successful reality. Without that, we would not have brought Bohana to life.”

Derek’s story

This year, double Babson alumnus Derek White ’14, MS’14 will join the Tastemakers Talk.  Derek worked in finance right after Babson, but his heart wasn’t in it.  One day, waiting in line at a local café, he noticed that Chef Louis DiBiccari was standing right behind him.  Derek introduced himself and then asked the chef how he could start to learn cooking as a profession.  Louis gave him a job.  Derek (now at BISq when Tavern Road closed) and Louis (a Babson Food Day alum) will surely share their story.

“The hardest part about Louis’ offer to become a cook at Tavern Road,” says White, “was that I had no legitimate reason to turn him down. My accounting education and passed CPA exams couldn’t stand up to the opportunity I had to pursue my emerging passion.”

Another engaging conversation at a Quick Service Incubator table at last year’s Food Day


These are just two examples of how Babson leaves its handprint on the canvas of food entrepreneurship and education.

Food Day is one day.  Food Sol is every day.  Babson’s resident action tank exists to support individuals in community to be entrepreneurial about food.  For eight years, we have said that “food is everybody’s business”. Today, it has never been more true. Eaters truly touch every aspect of the food industry.

As always, our remarkable Entrepreneur-in-Residence Andrew Zimmern with be there to co-host with us. This month, The New York Times did a wonderful story on him.

Andrew Zimmern leads a conversation with a group of food entrepreneurs at Babson.

The full program is free to attend, open to the public, come-when-you-can, leave-when-you-need-to. Please lean in and make connections. The future of food needs us all.