Daniela Kratz is the woman behind Farmhouse Lab. It is her passion for whole, natural foods that help people lead a healthy lifestyle, combined with her love of the sustainability movement, that led to the creation of their delicious, unique products.
“My paternal grandmother lived next door to us in Germany, and my sister and I spent a lot of time with her. She cooked everything from scratch, and loved letting us help with whatever she was making.”
Daniela describes herself as more of a cook than a baker. “I love the freedom of cooking, being able to include my own creative idea, tastes and favorites.”
When she was 10 years old, her parents rented a house that had an amazing spice rack. Daniela’s first culinary experiments simply consisted of boiling water and adding various combinations of spices and herbs.
At 13 she began to help make meals for her family. “My job was the salad. To make the dressings, I applied what I head learned from my herb and spice experiments, and my father loved them.”
At the time she began college degree in business administration, she went to work for Shell Oil Company. “I wanted to be independent, and Shell put me on a management fast-track. They paid my college expenses and gave me a stipend. Most importantly, it meant a little bit of structure and a little bit of pressure. I loved that.”
Numerous promotions followed, and in 2005, she was sent to the US as a category manager.
When her daughter was born in 2013, she took a long sabbatical. Simultaneously, a huge reorganization took place at Shell, and it was decided that everyone in leadership needed to move to their US headquarters in Texas.
“We had just had our first child, we had bought a house in Corte Madera, and as I reevaluated my career, I realized that I didn’t want to move. I felt very empowered, and I asked myself what I really wanted to do, what I was really good at.”
The answer to both questions was “dressings.” “I laugh at myself a bit when I think how that passion stayed with me all the way from childhood.”
Her research indicated that while there were many dressings for sale, most were in plastic, and she found the texture and taste disappointing. “Fabulous produce is too often topped by subpar dressings.”
Another motivator was the fact that Daniela had become certified as an ayurvedic practitioner. “I am fascinated by delicious fresh food that also has a function, and I believe food should be as fresh and unprocessed as possible. Ayurveda teaches that we should eat with all our senses. Food should be beautiful and colorful. We should enjoy the tactile aspect of eating.”
Daniela’s values mean making conscious choices about which suppliers she uses for ingredients, recyclable bottles, and green printing. Two products have received CCOF organic certification, and 2 are 70% organic.
“I am an advocate for creating joyful communities by sharing food and food preparation, resulting in less waste and more sustainability. We would like to inspire you to play with fresh healthy wholesome food: experiment and have fun!”