Genevieve's dad told her to take risks. When he got sick, she took her biggest one yet.
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Facebook #SheMeansBusiness

When Genevieve Lee's father had a heart attack, it made her question everything — even the food they ate together.

All images by SheMeansBusiness/Facebook, used with permission.


Before his heart attack and triple bypass surgery, Genevieve's family never thought too much about what they ate. While her mother is a good cook, their meals were supplemented with highly processed food and loaded with extra sugar, salt, and preservatives. Delicious, but not the best idea for a diabetic recovering from major heart surgery.

With her dad on two months of bed rest, Genevieve took a leave of absence from her film editing job to care for him, immersing herself in learning to cook whole-food versions of his favorite meals. One of the biggest challenges was finding a nutrient-rich, low-sugar replacement for the cereal he liked to snack on throughout the day.

She decided on homemade granola. It was an instant hit.

Helping her father change his diet changed her life. And her career path.

Once Genevieve started making healthy food, she couldn't stop. Soon her friends were receiving gifts of homemade granola during the holidays. Her dad saw her enthusiasm and encouraged her to take the next logical step: If you like it so much, why not sell it?

"My initial challenge is that I wasn't a risk-taker. Leaving a comfortable job with decent pay was really daunting. After giving much thought and talking to my dad, he gave me this advice: He said, 'Don't worry so much. Just do it. Things will sort of work out.'"
— Genevieve Lee

With just $500 in seed money, Genevieve started small. She sold her granola at farmers markets, then online. Her family helped every step of the way, even spending afternoons portioning and labeling packages.

Now, four years in, The Edible Company has a mail-order program, a Singapore storefront, and a strong social media presence — even if teaching people what granola is can sometimes be a challenge.

"People have a very sweet and savory tooth here, and most healthier options of anything is neither of that. So the first buy in is always our popular Coconut Gula Melaka flavor. It's connectable, sweeter, and has the essence of a Southeast Asian flavor. All of our products are gently sweetened, but I still get people who asked me to make it sweeter. I'm standing my ground."
— Genevieve Lee

In a 2014 interview, Genevieve acknowledged that her company would have failed immediately had she started it 10 years ago. Products like granola and muesli are now becoming mainstream in Singapore — and social media has played a big part in that.

There are 3.5 million active Facebook users in Singapore, and mentions from famous, popular users can make a big difference for a small business like Genevieve's.

"Now, social media makes all the difference. If a friend who has 24,000 followers posts a photo of my granola, I'll get 20 to 30 new followers and lots of people asking where to buy it within a few hours," she told an interviewer last year.

Many entrepreneurs sacrifice their personal relationships when they start their businesses. Genevieve has worked hard to be the exception.

She makes a point of carving out time in her schedule to spend with family, and she never works on Sundays. It's a refreshingly healthy approach. More than a decade after the health scare that started it all, Genevieve's father — and the business he convinced her to start — are doing well. And her family has never been stronger — even as they prepare to get a little larger next month when Genevieve and her husband welcome their first child.

Being an entrepreneur and a new mom will be a huge challenge, but Genevieve is ready for whatever happens.

"Running a business alone is one tough journey. Every thing and every day is a challenge. What keeps me going is that I refuse to give up on this dream until I have exhausted all possible options. I don't want to live my life with regrets."

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Shopping sustainably is increasingly important given the severity of the climate crisis, but sometimes it's hard to know where to turn. Thankfully, Amazon is making it a little easier to browse thousands of products that have one or more of 19 sustainability certifications that help preserve the natural world.

The online retailer recently announced Climate Pledge Friendly, a program to make it easier for customers to discover and shop for more sustainable products. To determine the sustainability of a product, the program partnered with third-party certifications, including governmental agencies, nonprofits, and independent labs.

With a selection of items spanning grocery, household, fashion, beauty, and personal electronics, you'll be able to shop more sustainably not just for the holiday season, but throughout the year for your essentials, as well.

You can browse all of the Climate Pledge Friendly products here, labeled with an icon and which certification(s) they meet. To get you on your way to shopping more sustainably, we've rounded up eight of our favorite Climate Pledge Friendly-products that will make great gifts all year long.

Amazon

Jack Wolfskin Women's North York Coat

Give the gift of warmth and style with this coat, available in a variety of colors. Sustainability is built into all Jack Wolfskin products and each item comes with a code that lets you trace back to its origins and understand how it was made.

Bluesign: Bluesign products are responsibly manufactured by using safer chemicals and fewer resources, including less energy, in production.


Amazon

Amazon All-new Echo Dot (4th Gen)

For the tech-obsessed. This Alexa smart speaker, which comes in a sleek, compact design, lets you voice control your entertainment and your smart home as well as connect with others.

Reducing CO2: Products with this certification reduce their carbon footprint year after year. Certified by the Carbon Trust.


Amazon

Burt's Bees Family Jammies Matching Holiday Organic Cotton Pajamas

Get into the holiday spirit with these fun matching PJs for the whole family. Perfect for pictures that even Fido can get in on.

Global Organic Textile Standard: This certifies each step of the organic textile supply chain against strict ecological and social standards. Each product with this certification contains 95%-100% organic content.

Amazon

Naturistick 5-Pack Lip Balm Gift Set

With 100% natural ingredients that are gentle on ultra-sensitive lips, this gift is a great gift for the whole family.

Compact by Design (Certified by Amazon): Products with this certification are packaged without excess air and water, which reduces the carbon footprint of shipping and packaging.


Amazon

Arus Women's GOTS Certified Organic Cotton Hooded Full Length Turkish Bathrobe

For those who love to lounge around, this full-length organic cotton bathrobe is the way to go. Available in five different colors, it has comfortable cuffed sleeves, a hood, pockets, and adjustable belt.

Global Organic Textile Standard: This certifies each step of the organic textile supply chain against strict ecological and social standards. Each product with this certification contains 95%-100% organic content.

Amazon

L'Occitane Extra-Gentle Vegetable Based Soap

This luxe soap, made with moisturizing shea butter and scented with verbena, is perfect for the self-care obsessed.

Compact by Design (Certified by Amazon): Products with this certification are packaged without excess air and water, which reduces the carbon footprint of shipping and packaging.

Amazon

Goodthreads Men's Sweater-Knit Fleece Long-Sleeve Bomber

For the fashionable men in your life, this fashion-forward knit bomber is an excellent choice. The sweater material keeps it cozy and warm, while the bomber jacket-cut, zip front, and rib-trim neck make it look elevated.

Recycled Claim Standard 100: Products with this certification use materials made from at least 95% recycled content.

Amazon

All-new Fire TV Stick with Alexa Voice Remote

Make it even easier to access your favorite movies and shows this holiday season. The new Fire TV Stick lets you use your voice to search across apps. Plus it controls the power and volume on your TV, so you'll never need to leave the couch! Except for snacks.

Reducing CO2: Products with this certification reduce their carbon footprint year after year. Certified by the Carbon Trust.

Images via Canva and Unsplash

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If the past year has taught us nothing else, it's that sending love out into the world through selfless acts of kindness can have a positive ripple effect on people and communities. People all over the United States seemed to have gotten the message — 71% of those surveyed by the World Giving Index helped a stranger in need in 2020. A nonprofit survey found 90% helped others by running errands, calling, texting and sending care packages. Many people needed a boost last year in one way or another and obliging good neighbors heeded the call over and over again — and continue to make a positive impact through their actions in this new year.

Welcometoterranova and P&G Good Everyday wanted to help keep kindness going strong, so they partnered up to create the Lead with Love Fund. The fund awards do-gooders in communities around the country with grants to help them continue on with their unique missions. Hundreds of nominations came pouring in and five winners were selected based on three criteria: the impact of action, uniqueness, and "Welcometoterranova-ness" of their story.

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