Keep Food Alive, or KFA, has always been there. The words first came to me in 2010 and refused to let go. I was sitting on the couch jotting down every string of words that popped into my head in a frantic search for my WHY, when I heard a voice say, “Simplify.” A few minutes and a hundred words or more, I heard again, “Simplify.” For the next couple of hours, I sat on the couch thinking and writing with the constant interruption, “Simplify.”
When I finally stepped back and took a broad look at the page Keep Food Alive popped off like it had already lived a 100 years. It stood out so boldly, I couldn’t ignore it. In that moment, Keep Food Alive became Abeego’s Why.
My first introduction to the concept of Why a brand exists began when I watched the brilliant TED talk by Simon Sinek, “Why Great Leaders Inspire Action.” Then, I read his seminal book, “Start With Why.” In a short time he’d become a sort of business Guru to me who I still refer back to when I fall off track.
While I loved the phrase, I still didn’t know what it meant, nor did I know how to explain it. For years I struggled to sustain the tagline and was constantly challenged by others. The most common thing I heard was, “But you have to tell them What it is!” I defended it laboriously and in my heart, I knew Simon Sinek would understand it.
As fate would have it, I met Simon Sinek at a TED conference years later. I was selling Abeego and he walked up to my booth and read aloud, “Abeego—Keep Food Alive.” I immediately jumped in to explain KFA when he stopped me mid-sentence and said, “I get it...Keep Food Alive.” He shared what it meant to him and KFA was solidified forever.
Fast forward to one year ago as I started writing the KFA Manifesto. I felt compelled to capture what KFA meant to help others see our vision. The more I tried to define it, the further I got from locking it down, and getting to the core of it. People on my team all had slightly different takes. After days of writing, editing, and feeling (so many feels), I had another a-ha moment that went back to my talk with Simon Sinek. He got it, even though his definition differed from mine. I realized, Keep Food Alive is not solely mine to define. It’s everyone’s. Abeego simply holds space for all those to find KFA for themselves.
Last month we asked our collective Hive, “What does Keep Food Alive mean to you?” We received 100’s of responses and it was emotionally rewarding and inspiring for us to read how differently people interpreted it. Here are some of our favorites:
Teaching our children where food comes from, the hard work of a garden and rich rewards, harvesting, washing, and cooking these foods together and then sitting down to enjoy the fruits of our labour over laughter and stories.
Keeping food alive to me is how meals shared bring people together. People from all walks of life can all share the same meal and have it mean different things to them. Talking and sharing over the making and eating of food is what is done universally and is such a wonderful and important thing.
To keep food alive is having my children in the kitchen, creating meals with me. It’s making breakfast/lunch/dinner not just about eating to stay alive, but about giving sustenance to our souls and strengthening our relationships as a family.
Food is a vehicle for making connections with other people and a way to express yourself through that lens.
“Keep Food Alive” to me means to eat things that are nourishing for all, to keep food traditions with people who make you feel alive
Keeping food alive is celebrating and appreciating food and nature, and sharing the gifts of nature with others. It’s going back to the basics and living off of what the earth naturally provides. It’s loving nature and people through the gift of food.
To me, “Keep Food Alive” means to pass down the knowledge to my daughter of making food, loving to work and create with food, and to heal with food.
Keep Food Alive means living a more sustainable and healthy lifestyle while building and maintaining a positive connection with food for both myself and my daughters. A life of fresh, colourful, local ingredients; wholesome, fuelling meals shared with family and friends; active, outdoor living and a little bit of indulgence. A life of balance.
Keeping food alive means using only what you need, preserving what you can and respecting where your food came from.