Seeing people take entrepreneurial risks amidst the crisis is admirable, inspirational and worth sharing. I have chosen two exemplary cases of ambitious and resourceful individuals who seek to revive local products and rural traditions on the island of Kea.
After nearly 22 years on the island, I first came across Anthea’s World last week after scrolling through an article on the Huffington Post. I was left fascinated and inspired by this rural initiative on the island of Kea, which brings to life a visionary notion for the island’s tourism industry.
A group of four individuals decided to embark on an entrepreneurial adventure to discover and promote things that the Greek soil can offer amidst the economic crisis.
What did they find?
Geographic beauty. Pure produce. Virgin land.
The group came across Kea and was astounded by the island’s rural beauty and primitive nature. Characteristics which hold tremendous value from both an ecological and entrepreneurial perspective.
Now, the team has developed an impressive variety of local products with a modern twist, making them stand out in today’s saturated mainstream market.
Some of their products include:
- Greek Thyme Honey
- Anthea’s Bee Elixir (Honey, Pollen, Propolis & Royal Jelly)
- Natural Greek Sea Salt
- Greek Bio Almonds
- Brown Greek Lentils
- Natural Almond Body Scrub
- Natural Beeswax Candles
Their mission is to return to native roots, and to display Greece’s local produce and natural beauty abroad. Apparently, this is working as the majority of their clients are foreign, ranging from Britain, Switzerland, Spain, the US and even Hong Kong!
2) The Mouzakis Family
Andreas Ioannis Mouzakis and his wife opened the small family business of Aristaios, on Kea. The couple’s inherent passion for the island and its natural riches is reflected in their work, as all products are made with “μεράκι” (special care) and a native touch.
Located in the area of Mylopotamos, Aristaios sells a variety of edible goods ranging from local wine to traditional sweets, as well as distinct types of cheese found only on the island of Kea.
(Note: All fruits and vegetables are picked seasonally from their own garden patch)
One of my personal favorites, is a sweet alcoholic liquor made from basil leaves – something truly unique. This beverage captures the subtle, refreshing taste of the plant in an exquisite blend.
The “γλυκό του κουταλιού”, made from local abourgouna fig, also stands out as a speciality of the island. The fruit is preserved in syrup and usually served as dessert on top of plain Greek yogurt. You’ll find a variety of these desserts packaged in glass jars – great gift ideas!
(Note: abourgouna is a special kind of fig picked while still unripe)
More information: Aristaios‘ website
Any other ideas for rural tourism on Kea?