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Check Out Chris Lin’s Story

Today we’d like to introduce you to Chris Lin.

Chris, we appreciate you taking the time to share your story with us today. Where does your story begin?
Our story started nearly 20 years ago in the Sonoran desert with the Noriega family. In Sonora, the Noriega family was a part of a research team backed by NASA trying to create biofuel from Salicornia. Salicornia is also known as Sea Asparagus, Samphire, or Sea beans. Salicornia is a halophyte plant which means that it grows with saltwater. This is a superpower for a plant because only 1% of the accessible water on earth is fresh, and 70% of that water is used in agriculture. So if we can produce productive crops with the use of seawater, like Salicornia, it would be a beneficial resource for generations to come. Although the Sonoran project didn’t end up producing a viable source of biofuel, the Noriegas continued growing Salicornia for the culinary market and created a farm in Ensenada, Baja California. Salicornia is used frequently in fine dining because of its salty taste, beautiful green color, and succulent texture.

One day, the Noriegas came upon the idea of dehydrating Salicornia to help reduce waste of crop yield. If Salicornia wasn’t sold, it would go to waste, so they tried dehydrating it. They knew that Salicornia was rich in bioavailable nutrients such as protein and fiber and contained minerals such as zinc, potassium, and calcium, so they believed there could be a potential use for a dehydrated Salicornia powder in nutrition. They discovered that the powder had a salty taste and served as a perfect alternative to salt. This is when I joined the Noriegas after learning about their project. I was intrigued by Salicornia and its environmental and nutritional benefits. After sending this “green salt” to labs, we discovered that it had 50% less sodium than salt, 11% fiber, 20% fiber, and Vitamin B3. Green Salt could be used interchangeably with Salt in any dish. Thus, Green Salt, the healthy alternative to salt was born.

In American, nearly half of our adult population has high blood pressure. It isn’t a surprise why when we look at the average sodium intake of US adults. On average, we consume 1,000 mg more sodium than we should on a daily basis. Sodium is a modifiable risk factor for high blood pressure. That is why together with the Noriegas, I decided to create the brand Green Salt, and establish a base in Los Angeles and market our product to the US population.

I’m sure you wouldn’t say it’s been obstacle free, but so far would you say the journey have been a fairly smooth road?
We are only just beginning with our Green Salt project, but there’s been a lot of difficulties along the way. When the Noriegas lost funding for our Salicornia project in Sonora, they had to decide whether or not to continue growing halophyte plants like Salicornia. In the end, the opportunity of selling to restaurants and their providers came along and they went along with it. For our new product, Green Salt, it has been difficult at times to explain the product to people. The other day someone said “I don’t understand, Salt is a mineral, how can a salt be plant-based” I’m sure we will have many more struggles in convincing people to try out the product. Once they do, they understand quickly and enjoy the salty and umami taste of Green Salt. We believe that Salicornia has a huge potential to benefit people’s lives and the environment.

Thanks for sharing that. So, maybe next you can tell us a bit more about your work?
I would consider myself a jack of all trades, master of none. I was born and raised in Los Angeles, and after that went abroad to Europe to work on farms and cook in restaurants. Briefly afterwards, I was in medical school in Mexico. I enjoy learning languages, learning about other people’s cultures, and seeing different ways of life. That is how I met the Noriegas in Mexico and learned about Salicornia. Now, I dabble in marketing. I’m also the founder of AMOR Handmade, a project that collaborates with artisans in Mexico to create beautiful handwoven dog collars that empower women with sustainable jobs.

Is there anything else you’d like to share with our readers?
If you’re interested in trying out Green Salt, our healthy alternative to salt, you can pre-order it on our kickstarter! Our campaign is live until April 22nd. You can find the link on our website www.trygreensalt.com.

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What to check out next:
Aleasha Bahr is a sales & marketing strategist known for showing introverts and ambiverts the Secret Art of Subtle Selling.  She personally sold millions in revenue while discovering introverts are usually top sales people – as soon as they stop trying to act like extroverts.  We’ve partnered with her to produce Introverted Entrepreneur Success Stories. Check out episode 1 below:

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