Interested in starting your own entrepreneurial journey in food and beverage but unsure what to expect? Then read up on our interview with Erica Bethe Levin, Founder and CEO of Globowl, located in Chicago, IL, USA.

What's your business, and who are your customers?

Globowl is an internationally inspired baby food company introducing children to culture through food from their very first bites. Early introduction to flavor, texture, and spice encourages adventurous eating for life, while early allergen introduction - a practice recommended by the USDA and American Academy of Pediatrics - helps to mitigate food allergies. We accomplish this through delicious, nutritious, all-natural, preservative-free, low-sodium, low-sugar REAL meals like Pad Thai for Tots, Veggie Tikka Masala, and Baby Spice's Bean Bowl. Globowl brings the world to your baby's palate, plate and heart while inspiring curiosity for the planet and all of its people.

Today’s busy parents – re-emerging from a global pandemic – crave flavorful, healthy meals that mitigate their child’s chances of developing food allergies. But many of these time-stretched moms and dads (of which I’m one) have little desire or extra hours in the day to cook it themselves. Globowl strives to make life a little bit easier by providing parents with shelf-stable meals that can be taken on the go or eaten at home – no ice packs or microwaves necessary! And by providing peace of mind that early allergen introduction is scientifically linked to fewer food allergies down the line.

Tell us about yourself

First and foremost, I’m a mom. I’m a wife, daughter, and two-time founder. I am also an avid and passionate cook and love taking care of others. When I first started my second child on solids, I didn’t want to make the same mistake I did with my first. With Charlie, I was hesitant to give him texture, flavor, and spice, and he’s a terrible eater.

So I gave Neve coconut shrimp curry as her very first food, followed immediately by saffron and sausage pasta, then pesto. She was also a “quarantine baby,” so during a time when we couldn’t leave the house, let alone the country, I wanted to find a way to bring the world to her. And the only way I knew how to do that was through food.

I also deeply, deeply believe that food is a universal unifier – the sooner we introduce kids to other countries, people, and cultures – the sooner they practice more acceptance, open-mindedness, and curiosity for others. The idea of creating little humans with big hearts is what motivates me every single day.

What's your biggest accomplishment as a business owner?

I am really proud that at 24 years old, I started my first company and built it to profitability very quickly… while learning some tough lessons along the way. But I learned them at an early age, so I didn’t have to make the same mistakes twice. I am also very, very proud to say that I was one of the first female founders at 1871, Chicago’s largest tech incubator. I met incredible business leaders, heads of state, and some of the most successful founders in the world there.

It established me as part of the Chicago startup ecosystem, and it’s something I still rely on today. Every day. There is no city in the world more well-suited for starting a company than Chicago. I am still proud of the segment I did on CNN during that time, where my 28-year-old self was pitted against Kara Swisher. But, most importantly, my son’s preschool director shared with me that my son is always talking about “mommy and the baby food” and that he consistently expresses how proud he is of me. THAT’S what it’s all about.

What's one of the hardest things that come with being a business owner?

I know we all feel this way – at least some of the time, if not all of the time. As a mom and business owner, I truly feel the weight of the world on my shoulders every day. I feel all of the highs alone and all of the lows alone, which is even worse. In order to not feel like I’m on an island all of the time, I surround myself with intrinsically joyful family, friends and colleagues. It’s also really hard being the final decision-maker, it may sound good in theory, but in reality, there is nowhere else to place blame but on yourself.

What are the top tips you'd give to anyone looking to start, run and grow a business today?

  1. I mentioned one directly above – have a strong support network. Family, friends, and colleagues that make you happy, bring you joy, and take you out of the muck of everyday stress.
  2. It’s not enough to have a great idea – it’s all about execution. If you’re interested in starting something, do your research to figure out if you have the means, heart, and time to pursue it. Anyone can have an idea to start something, but investing in making it happen... that’s a totally different commitment.
  3. Make sure your heart is really in it and know the sacrifices required of you before spending money or going all-in. You are more than likely looking at at least a five-year period of your life – probably longer. You must be 100% certain before embarking on one of life’s most stressful journeys. But if done right, it is also one of the most exciting, rewarding, and soul-fulfilling experiences you’ll ever have.

Where can people find you and your business?


If you like what you've read here and have your own story as a solo or small business entrepreneur that you'd like to share, then please answer these interview questions. We'd love to feature your journey on these pages.

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