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Business Name: Loka Creative

Briefly tell us the story of your business?

My name is Julie Ruth, and I am the principal creative director and owner of Loka Creative, a branding/marketing/design agency located in Santa Fe. “Loka” means world in Sanskrit, named so because I believe you can craft the world as you want to see it through your business practices and devotion to your priorities and passions in life. After selling a successful graphics business in northern Vermont, I relocated here with my husband in early 2012 and started up Loka. I have been developing advertising campaigns that include everything from branding to web design to package design and catalog design for over 16 years and serve clients all over the country. The plan for Loka Creative is to let it evolve organically here in Santa Fe, and be the one-stop partner for businesses and organizations to source everything they need to help reach their individual goals.

How does local food enhance / benefit your business?

I have had the pleasure of seeing first-hand how a local food movement can impact the well-being of other businesses in a positive manner. During the years 2006-2011, I owned a graphic/web design company in northern Vermont where the local food movement really gained traction during that particular time. I worked with a large number of food producers, agricultural organizations, seed companies, higher education institutions and natural product manufacturers and enjoyed widespread word-of-mouth recommendations from all of these clients. It helped my business grow over 300% during those years. I also saw a trickle-down effect for likeminded businesses in the area. Those who were concerned about sustainability and future food sources tended to conduct their businesses in a similar manner, and so all of us grew together.

Why is a vibrant local food system and a healthy local economy important to your business?

A vibrant local food system and resulting healthy local economy is not just an ongoing revenue stream for a business like mine which provides professional services. It is important because it indicates there is a community that believes in supporting their own above national chains, that believes in allowing people to truly do what they love and earn a living for it, and it is important because all these things combine together for the greater good of the region. As one sector of the local food economy grows, it will trigger another sector which will eventually spill over into other industries and businesses in the area.

What do you love most about local food?

I love knowing where my food comes from, and that the farmer down the road gave a good life to the animal before it became meat for the rest of us. I believe there is nothing like the taste of fresh vegetables that have been grown organically. I was raised in the Midwest with a huge vegetable garden and always appreciate that pop of flavor you get when you eat something straight out of the ground.

+ other stories

Edible celebrates New Mexico's food culture, season by season. We believe that knowing where our food comes from is a powerful thing. With our high-quality, aesthetically pleasing and informative publication, we inspire readers to support and celebrate the growers, producers, chefs, beverage and food artisans, and other food professionals in our community.