We had the great opportunity of meeting the entrepreneur Levi Roots. His whole journey started in a little village in Jamaica where he was the youngest of six children. Since he was the youngest this led him to spend quality time with his grandma who taught him the art of flavours when cooking traditional Caribbean recipes (this included the famous Reggae Reggae sauce). When he finally came to England he wanted to become a musician and played his reggae themed music. However, this unfortunately did not work out for him so he decided to take a new path as a chef. He and his family put love and affection into the 67 bottles of sauce they made and sold them at the Nottingham Carnival but never really made a large profit. Levi then took the next step by going on Dragons Den. He got an investment from Peter Jones and Richard Farleigh to invest £50,000 in return for 40% of his company. However, he said Peter was invested in Levi himself whereas Richard was invested in the sauce. After gaining attention from Dragons Den he was given an opportunity to sell his sauce in Sainsbury’s on a scale of a quarter of a million bottles, which was a major jump from the 67 he made in his kitchen. The next challenge he faced was producing the 250,000 bottles of sauce Sainsbury’s needed. His whole journey showed how a brilliant idea helped a humble man from humble beginnings in Brixton become the entrepreneur he is today. Not only does he make a range of sauces and Caribbean drinks sold in a different shop, he recently opened up a restaurant called Levi Roots Caribbean. This opportunity allowed the Business and Food and Cookery students to question him about the difficulties he faced and where his passion for food came from.
Written by Sagal Hassan Year 10