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Saturday, April 17, 2010


The Earth's Best Story by Ron & Arnie Koss - Book review

The Earth's Best Story

A Bittersweet Tale of Twin Brothers Who Sparked an Organic Revolution

By: Ron Koss, Arnie Koss

Published: January 26, 2010
Format: Paperback, 384 pages
ISBN: 9781603582391
Publisher: Chelsea Green Publishing

"Organic baby food is ubiquitous today. It can be found in glass jars, portable squeeze tubes, and frozen cubes. Once upon a time there was no organic baby food", write successful twin brother partners and entrepreneurs Ron Koss and Arnie Koss, in their insightful and inspirational story of their unlikely business venture The Earth's Best Story: A Bittersweet Tale of Twin Brothers Who Sparked an Organic Revolution. The authors share their entrepreneurial journey from its inception, through its troubled times, and toward its ultimate success with humor and honesty.

Ron Koss (photo left) and Arnie Koss share their successes and missteps on their way to building the first organic baby food company in America. The story is more than just a summary of how they moved from an idea to a successful business venture. While they describe, with unusual honesty, how the idea was formulated, to generating financial backing, to marketing their product, the story delves more deeply into the lives and aspirations of the entrepreneurs. The brothers write in detail how they believed in the critical importance of building an organic based company, that cared about the environment and the health of the babies who ate their product. This concern with larger issues than mere profit formed the philosophical basis for their company. The company had to become successful on ethical and environmental grounds.

Arnie Koss (photo left) and Ron Koss don't just describe a company. Instead, they intersperse their business analysis with their own personal journey as entrepreneurs and as human beings. Their growth as people, caring about the needs of others besides themselves, is part of their remarkable achievement. They set out to prove, whether stated explicitly or not, that an organic baby food company could succeed in a difficult and highly competitive marketplace. The brothers not only demonstrated an environmentally friendly company could achieve success in the industry, but that it could also be prosperous while located in rural Vermont, far from major cities and manufacturing centers. The commitment to their ideals and aspirations, despite numerous setbacks, speaks well of their character and their faith in their product line.

For me, the power of the book is how Arnie and Ron Koss share a fascinating and very reader friendly account of their entrepreneurial journey. The twins point out that the book is about how they built and operated the company, but they also point out how they made several serious missteps. Their open and frank discussion of their mistakes provides the reader with valuable lessons on which courses of action are best avoided. At the same time, the authors demonstrate how to maintain a working partnership that is able to overcome serious setbacks, and continues to operate effectively. They also provide powerful insights into how to run a family based company effectively and with a minimum of friction and dissension. Most of all, the book is a deeply personal one, told in alternative voices by each brother, from their own unique point of view. The personal nature of the book gives it a power that a more clinical analysis of the company would lack.

I highly recommend the fascinating and enlightening book The Earth's Best Story: A Bittersweet Tale of Twin Brothers Who Sparked an Organic Revolution by Ron and Arnie Koss, to anyone seeking a model for creating and building a successful organic and environmentally friendly company. The book demonstrates that entrepreneurs, concerned about ethics and the environment, can compete successfully in the marketplace. For environmentally oriented consumers and parents, the recognition that organic and safe products are an important part of the future of business, is exciting and reassuring.

Read the fun account of a revolutionary business The Earth's Best Story: A Bittersweet Tale of Twin Brothers Who Sparked an Organic Revolution by Arnie and Ron Koss, and discover how visionary and ethical entrepreneurs can transform the business landscape for the better. Building a better world is also good business, while creating a healthier tomorrow for everyone.

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