Interested in starting your own entrepreneurial journey in food and beverage but unsure what to expect? Then read up on our interview with Emanuel Colombo, owner of Masa Empanadas, LLC, located in Bend, OR, USA.
What's your business, and who are your customers?
We make traditional Argentinian empanadas, but with one big difference, they are all vegetarian and plant-based. We use quality (mostly organic), ethically sourced, and plant-based ingredients (and some dairy). Made in small batches and following tradition, our empanadas are handmade from scratch. All vegetarian + two vegan options. These are not gluten-free. Good for the soul and better for our planet.
Tell us about yourself
I am Masa Empanadas' owner and founder. I was born and raised on a small family farm in the province of Entre Rios, Argentina. In 2010, I abandoned my farmhand chores and moved to Lima, Peru, to pursue my passion— dance. I studied, trained, and went on to perform in numerous dance events, theatre, and dance shows on Peruvian television. I then arrived in the U.S. in 2015 in hopes of expanding my dance repertoire, which I very successfully did until COVID brought everything to a screeching halt.
With extra time on my hands, I began to explore my other passion, which is food, specifically empanadas. All throughout my childhood, my mother made and taught me how to make these Argentinian delicacies. Inspired by a traditional family recipe, I have infused them with my own personal lifestyle choices and created unique vegetarian empanadas.
Relentlessly and methodically, I have perfected them with a very discerning palate and lots of love. Masa currently offers two choices of vegetarian empanadas, all organic, handmade, and consistently delicious.
What's your biggest accomplishment as a business owner?
Starting as a maker of frozen empanadas and then moving into a food truck selling ready-to-eat empanadas.
What's one of the hardest things that comes with being a business owner?
By far, the hardest thing for me is staffing.
What are the top tips you'd give to anyone looking to start, run and grow a business today?
Do a lot of research on the market you're going to be breaking into. Make your branding a priority so that you stand out and deliver a quality product consistently.
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.
Turn your craft into recurring revenue with Subkit. Start your subscription offering in minutes and supercharge it with growth levers. Get early access here.