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In Search of the Wild Tofurky

How a Business Misfit Pioneered Plant-Based Foods Before They Were Cool

Seth Tibbott Steve Richardson



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Diversion Books
07 April 2020
From treehouse dream to global brand, Torfuky founder Seth Tibbott tells the triumphant story of a family-owned, eco-friendly enterprise that led the great vegan renaissance and made millions-without selling its soul.

'If there ever was a person more ill-prepared to run a business than I was in 1980,' writes Tofurky founder Seth Tibbott, 'I have yet to meet them.'

Against all odds, however, this tree-hugging educator with no business background managed to build a global plant-based food brand worth millions. How did he do it?

This book details the improbable journey from treehouse to state-of-the-art eco-manufacturing plant churning out 12 million pounds of Tofurky per year. It wasn't an easy ride-first nine years of business brought in a grand total of $31,000-but Seth held on, experimenting with products, staying true to his belief in eco-friendly practices, and, when necessary, getting out of his own way. For anyone who feels they have something great to offer the world but lacks formal business training, this is a story about hope, grit, and selling the dream-without selling out.
Imprint:   Diversion Books
Country of Publication:   United States
Dimensions:   Height: 228mm,  Width: 152mm, 
ISBN:   9781635766530
ISBN 10:   1635766532
Pages:   256
Publication Date:  
Audience:   General/trade ,  ELT Advanced
Format:   Hardback
Publisher's Status:   Active

Seth Tibbott is Tofurky's Founder, Chairman, and CEO of thirty-five years. He's no former Wharton whizz kid or stock junky; in fact, he was an idealistic hippie with no business acumen living in a treehouse when he conceived the idea of bringing healthy, eco-friendly, tasty protein to the world. Nearly forty years later, using his unconventional business approach paired with faith in his products and a deep belief in environmental causes, he has transformed the $2,500 startup into a family-owned global brand worth over $100 million. He lives in Trout Lake, Washington. Steve Richardson writes, edits, and teaches in the damp foothills of Oregon's coast range mountains. He is the founding editor of Chemeketa Press and has published two writing textbooks, The Humble Essay and The Humble Argument, under an assumed name. He, too, was a wandering naturalist back in the day, which just goes to show you something, probably.

Reviews for In Search of the Wild Tofurky: How a Business Misfit Pioneered Plant-Based Foods Before They Were Cool

Seth's epic journey from his treehouse to flying high with Tofurky is one of the most inspirational in the history of the natural food movement. This book isn't about how an old hippie achieved success, but about a man who lived his truth and maintained his humility throughout his own evolution, and thereby touched lives across multiple continents, including mine. -Miyoko Schinner, CEO, Miyoko's Kitchen Expert advice and inspiration from a most unconventional source. Seth Tibbott, and the momentous meat-free mission of Tofurky, the company he co-founded, has done more for human health, the planet, and the animals than all their fiercest competitors combined-while maintaining the highest level of integrity. An education in the business of ethics. -Eric C Lindstrom, author of The Skeptical Vegan and The Smart Parent's Guide to Raising Vegan Kids Tofurky is an iconic international brand that inspires compassionate vegan living around the globe, while retaining the integrity of purpose born of its humble origin. Beginning as a small start-up operated by Seth Tibbott living in a treehouse in the Oregon woods, Tofurky has grown in into a global force. Seth is a good friend and colleague, and I'm excited that his uplifting story is now being shared in this book. -Gene Bauer, co-founder Farm Sanctuary and author of best-selling Living the Farm Sanctuary Life Tofurky is a family-owned company and despite having multiple offers from investors, have remained the way they originally intended. This is important because they are the visionaries of the brand based on mission and ethics rather than money; and speaking of money, being self-owned means they can continue generously giving to organizations that are helping animals. -Toni Okamoto, Vegan Outreach Putting down roots nearly 40 years ago, Tofurky continues to pave the way for a plant-powered future with its delicious vegan products, including its famous holiday roast, now sprouting up worldwide. This compassionate company's innovation is evidenced not only in its nourishing foods, but also in its eco-friendly production facility, and in the way it leads by example with a commitment to social justice values, pro-actively supporting equality and kindness for all. -Erica Meier, founder, Compassion Over Killing

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