We had the good fortune of connecting with Christina Herman and we’ve shared our conversation below.
Hi Christina, how do you think about risk?
Starting a business is risky on its own but starting one in an already saturated market, one that continues to become more and more saturated with products every day, is even more of a risk. First, we made sure our product is better than the rest by testing the market; next, we developed a product that we can confidently say is superior in quality, taste and preparation method; and, lastly, we made sure that our brand is able to stand out from the sea of names and images. There was a lot we didn’t know about the snack bar market, about online selling, and getting products onto shelves and cafes, so jumping into this industry was a risk for us. We’ve had to figure out the ropes as we went along, think on our feet, adapt and find innovative solutions to our challenges. We were able to build slowly and not incur debt to balance out the risk and work our way toward success.
Can you give our readers an introduction to your business? Maybe you can share a bit about what you do and what sets you apart from others?
What we feel proud of and what sets Naked Hippie Snacks apart from other granola bars and snack bars is the fact that we were able to successfully create a snack bar that offers the best in nutrition, texture and crave-worthy flavor without any processed ingredients. We have always sourced the highest quality, natural (and organic as often as possible) ingredients we can find and refuse to work with any cheap fillers like chicory root fiber or soy protein isolate that tend to cause digestive issues. We have also been able to create a blend of ingredients that provides at least 6 grams of protein and 4 grams of fiber along with other nutrients all-naturally without compromising taste or enjoyment factor. Going a step further, we dry our pineapples and bananas in-house. Lastly, Naked Hippie Snacks are the only snack bars around that harness the power of maple syrup to hold all the goodness together. Because of that, all of our bars have ZERO added sugars. During the past several months, we’ve been working hard on a website redesign and complete rebrand of our company that we’re excited to roll out and see what people think. We as individuals have grown immensely since we first started this company and the brand has evolved so we thought it was time to freshen up our look for the next chapter of Naked Hippie Snacks.
Let’s say your best friend was visiting the area and you wanted to show them the best time ever. Where would you take them? Give us a little itinerary – say it was a week long trip, where would you eat, drink, visit, hang out, etc.
Because we’ve lived on the Eastside of LA for over 30 years, our favorite restaurants and activities are in those neighborhoods. The perfect week on the East side would include meals at Pine and Crane, Joy, Coffee Commissary, Proof Bakery, Raffi’s Place, and Bestia; a visit to Descanso Gardens; bowling at Highland Park Bowl; and an evening of fun and revelry at Two Bit Circus.
Who else deserves some credit and recognition?
We are immensely appreciative of the local coffee shops and grocery stores who gave us a chance when we were first starting out, including Kafn Coffee Shop, M Street Cafe, Rainbow Acres, Romancing the Bean, and With Love Market. Without their trust, support and belief in our potential, we wouldn’t have been able to get this far. We also want to shout out a few people in our community who helped spread the word about our products–Nayiri @cleanedmy_plate and Nzhde Avag-Petrosyan @nzhfitness (both on Instagram), The Hyv, and actress Brenda Strong. Lastly, we are grateful to every single person who has stopped by our booth at Artisanal LA and Vegan Street Fair to taste our bars, buy bars in person or online and give us the much-needed encouragement to keep going.