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Halima Hamid

BSc Psychology, 2010

    Psychology graduate Halima Hamid believed she wouldn’t know how to set up a business selling her homemade chutney, after all none of her family had ever run a business. But, after entering a local competition which saw her pitching her chutney to an esteemed panel of business experts in Canary Wharf, Halima emerged as the winner.

    Today, her Rustic Roots brand is proving to be a recipe for success. “After I entered the competition, my experience has been an awesome roller coaster ride,” says Halima. Besides completely outclassing the other finalists, she’s received an entrepreneurial grant to help her move the business forward. The money will help her to get barcodes completed and finalise all of the nutritional content for laboratory testing. Marketed under the slogan, ‘Enhance your Mood through Good Food’, Halima’s chutney goes back to traditional recipe roots, a fact that helped with the branding. “I want to keep the chutney tradition alive in my product,” says Halima. “I don’t want anyone to change it or at the same time to say that it is similar to something else. My market research is so unique in the sense that my chutney doesn’t have any added flavours or preservatives. My main aim is to keep it authentic.” 

    For Halima the toughest challenge about creating Rustic Roots was being faced with and overcoming obstacles relating to confidence and self-esteem. “During the entrepreneurial process I’ve discovered that not only is this journey about building a successful company from zero, but also about building myself up from the ground, brick by brick, thus permitting myself to be the person I believe I am,” says Halima. “In other words, this business is a pure reflection of my inner self. My success has so far been remarkable and the progress of both myself and the business are undeniably interdependent.” Halima maintains that the steady and successful growth of her company has given her a huge boost in self-confidence.