When LaFortune Jeannette Djabea, owner of Mola Foods in Nashua, received an email from the NH Chronicle in mid August, she said she felt “pure excitement.” This feeling of excitement, however, took years to achieve.
“I’ve been working so hard not just to promote my food and spices, but African culture, which is mischaracterized in the media,” she said . “When I heard from NH Chronicle, I realized that I’m making progress toward my dream.”
The inquiry from NH Chronicle resulted in a visit from a senior producer and videographer in late August where Djabea answered questions about Mola Foods and shared some of her food. Located in Nashua, Mola Foods is a vibrantly colored space with seating for 40+ that features dine-in, takeout service, and a digital storefront with many products also available at area retail outlets.
“It was a terrific experience and one I hope can encourage more people to visit my store in person or visit us online,” Djabea said.
Her focus on the larger concept of “African Culture” has led Djabea to create Taste of Africa, a series of events that present her unique fusion of African and European cuisine. The next event in the series takes place on Friday, September 9 at 6:30 p.m.
“These events are great, because people can not just get a taste of Africa, but feel it within my space here at Mola Foods,” she said. “My focus in all I do is to open people’s eyes to the richness of Africa, a richness that does not get shown in mass media.”
Expressing appreciation for the exposure NH Chronicle will provide her and Mola Foods, Djabea said she will continue her community outreach efforts. One such recent effort resulted in a media interview by Go Solo – Subkit, which profiles entrepreneurs. Mola Foods has also been certified as a Women’s Business Enterprise by the Women’s Business Enterprise National Council (WBENC).
“Networking and building relationships has been a big part of my success,” said Djabea. “I’m grateful my mission resonates with others.”