“When we talk about being an authentic brand and authentic company, it is being authentic to ourselves,” which means encouraging our team “to bring their whole authentic selves to work, and that means to bring themselves as they are because that is what a family would do and we feel that we are a family,” Siete Family Foods Co-founder Miguel Garza explains in this episode of FoodNavigator-USA’s Investing in the Future of Food.
‘Family first, family second, business third’
Siete’s dedication to authenticity also is evident in the seven core values that Garza says influence every aspect of how the company does business. The most important three of which he says are: family first, family second, business third; do everything with love; and together is better.
“Family first, family second, business third is really this idea of being a people first company … as we are building this business. And we believe that if we are people-centric that we can build something successful in the marketplace and that it will also be a demonstration that you can put people first and you live out that value and building something very successful,” Garza said, adding he hopes other companies will follow Siete’s lead.
‘Together is better’
The idea that “together is better” also reflects this emphasis on people as well as authenticity, Garza said. Reflecting on his decision to bring half of his team to a recent expo, he acknowledged it might not have made the most financial sense, but that he didn’t care, because what mattered was bringing his team together to display the company’s products in which they have all “put a lot of love and care.”
‘Do everything with love’
Finally, he said, the company’s core value to do everything with love is at the root of every relationship and every communication and is something that keeps retailers and consumers coming back to the brand.
Authenticity is now table stakes for consumers
These values heavily influence how Siete represents itself to consumers, who Garza says place a premium on authenticity in part because they feel like they are becoming a part of the brand by purchasing its products and they want to feel like they belong to something real.
As a result, he added, every touch point feels the same – warm and welcoming – and the company’s messaging is aligned so that consumers can understand quickly the value proposition of the brand and why they should by its products.
Siete’s focus on authenticy is paying off for the company, which in 2019 secured $90m in funds to double its staff of 40 full-time employees, increase by tenfold its distribution of the brand’s grain-free chips, grain-free tortillas, hot sauces, cashew queso and other heritage-inspired products, and develop new products for unmet consumer needs.
Among the company’s recent new launches include sturdier chips that are fried in avocado oil and are perfect for dipping, new flavors and formats for the chips, several new enchilada sauces and a 10-inch grain-free tortilla “that is also delicious and holds a burrito and wraps really well,” Garza said.
He added that the company will continue to innovate in 2020 and beyond to meet the ever increasing “problems in the marketplace that we can solve with our products.”