Native Foods Hits the Desert

by, Kelly Behr 

Native Foods Cafe


Native Foods hosted our first ever annual conference for the home office and all the district managers in Palm Springs, CA, where it all began! I know the Chicago managers were pretty bummed to be in California and missing the action of the record breaking low temps! (they were not really). 

The 2-day conference included some awesome guest speakers, team building activities and food….lots of vegan food from our new cookbook! 


The first day we were fortunate to welcome Dan Lier, a very talented motivational speaker. It was the perfect way to kick off the conference. He got everyone excited and in a very positive state of mind…great timing to put those New Year's resolutions into action. No matter what business you are in, having a speaker come and talk to your team is a great way to build morale and help all the members both personally and professionally reach their goals and set new ones. 


Native Foods uses this image courtesy of  


Our Next speaker we were able to grab was Jeff Nelson of VegSource. He told a very interesting tale of coming from a long line of beef distributors to his decision to become vegan. His wife was diagnosed with a rare disease and was put on several medications. After reading a book on a plant based diet his wife decided to give it a try and she was soon off her meds and feeling much better. He talked about his decision to not only become vegan but becoming what he calls a professional vegan. He started and hasn't looked back since. To read more about his journey and Vegsource, visit his website,



Jeff gets us up and moving! 



The night concluded with a party full of food from the cookbook all crafted by Chef Alex. He was a busy bee in the kitchen! He welcomed us in the door with a delicious sushi selection, but this was just the tip of the vegan iceberg of what was to come. 


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Summer in Asia Roll (beware this is BBQ sushi that is very addicting!) 


The other appetizers he made just kept coming! Good news for you is that every one of these recipes is available in the new cookbook including this cocktail! 

Photo-1 Cantaloupe Martini



 Kogi Sliders (Kogi Seitan and Seasme Mayo, yum!)



 Walkin Tacos 


 Savory Stuffed Mushrooms



Cheeseburger Pizza (no, it really does taste like a cheeseburger)  



Day 2 we were treated with ex-NBA superstar and fellow vegan John Salley. He is a very passionate guy about food and the vegan diet. He has been a long time fan of Native Foods and it was awesome to hear him speak. Needless to say everyone wanted to get a picture with this super tall vegan! 

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Our first conference was a success! We thank everyone for the continued support of Native Foods and allowing us to grow and serve you!

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