Hispanic Business Rooted In Passion and Tradition

This successful Hispanic food industry business developed its product line from family tradition.

La Dorita’s dulce de leche is an all-natural, preservative free, homemade spread made with fresh from the farm milk provided by local creameries in Pennsylvania. This authentic Argentinean recipe is a treat for the whole family.

In 2009, Josephine and Gaston Oria wanted to share Josephine’s grandmother’s recipe with the world, and they took the steps to make their dream a reality.

Origins of La Dorita’s Hispanic business

The guiding forces behind the creation of La Dorita’s dulce de leche were a passion for baking and keeping a family tradition alive.

This Hispanic business journey of La Dorita began more than forty years ago when Josephine Oria’s adventurous father, Oliver and mother, Beatriz left their home country of Argentina in 1974; a country they loved, but believed had limitations for their aspirations and their future.

Dr. Oliver Caminos came to the United States to pursue a Cardiology Fellowship at West Penn Hospital in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania. The family of eight settled in a community outside of Pittsburgh with long established Latin American roots and culture.

When Dorita, Josephine’s grandmother came from Argentina to visit the family, Josephine was side by side with her in the kitchen cooking. And like most grandmother’s Dorita cooked with love and intuition and without recipes.

Years later when Josephine married Gaston Oria and started their family, Josephine began her Hispanic family traditions of her own. The Oria family birthday cake was one of these traditions. A key ingredient in this birthday cake was dulce de leche. Unfortunately, Josephine could not always find a suitable dulce de leche, and when she did find one it had often been sitting on a store shelf for months, if not years.

As Josephine explains it, “Creating my grandmother’s dulce de leche was a calling.”

Getting a Family Business Started

Hispanic business LA-Dorita Latin Business TodayAnd so, a journey began in their home kitchen, the epicenter of their start up business. In their kitchen the recipe was developed, and many calls were made to source ingredients to support their commitment to a natural product.

One of their keLatin Business Today Hispanic businessy ingredients was fresh, non-pasteurized milk. Reaching out to the Pennsylvania Association for Sustainable Agriculture (PASA) Josephine and Gaston were provided with the names of local farmers to supply the raw milk that would enable them to move ahead with production.

Josephine and Gaston named their product, La Dorita in honor of Josephine’s grandmother.

Now they had a name for their product; PASAs Mia Farber suggested La Dorita become a guest vendor at the local farmers market.

It was at the local farmers market where Josephine met a buyer at Whole Foods. As a result of this meeting, La Dorita would come to be placed on the shelves of Whole Foods in and around Pittsburgh.

 

Opportunity Leads to Growth For a Small Business

This opportunity to be featured in Whole Foods had a significant impact on production and Josephine and Gaston realized that their home kitchen would need to be expanded and certified as a commercial kitchen.

The couple took out a home equity loan and began another journey of working with their local municipalities, state department of agriculture, food safety and more to establish a standalone commercial kitchen.

By taking the steps to grow their business through investment and expansion the orders for La Dorita soon increased. This meant another change in business strategy as they soon outgrew theHispanic business La-Dorita-Kitchen-A-Community-Kitchen-Share Latin Business Todayir home kitchen space and needed to find a working commercial kitchen to the meet this increased demand.

Working with local realtors several properties were identified, but only one had the bones needed to support a commercial kitchen without having to start from scratch. An old Rotary Club had a working restaurant kitchen. What clinched this location for Josephine was the fact that the interior accents were painted navy La Dorita blue.

Acquisition of this space required some creative, and perhaps unconventional funding. The couple turned to Kickstarter to make the Rotary Club their commercial kitchen. Kickstarter is a crowd funding platform that allows people to seek funding and investment from the public to support and grow a business, product, or idea.

Their larger commercial kitchen brought about another opportunity for themselves and their community. Josephine and Gaston have established a kitchen-sharing program for new start-ups. They have eight registered tenants; a place where these fledgling Hispanic businesses cannot only test and perfect their recipes but also have access to the experiences Josephine and Gaston have had in starting and growing a business. This way of giving back, of helping others get their start continues to re-energize the couple and their vision for La Dorita.

Today the couple continues to work on the business; Josephine in a front of the house role and Gaston working in the kitchen daily and working closely with the local farmers to ensure the highest quality product. Both agree it is not an easy type of life they have chosen. They are passionate and committed to keeping their traditions alive.

As Josephine explains it, Embrace the crazy — the thought of not embarking on this journey to preserve our traditions was worse than not daring to do it.

Related articles:

A Family’s Entrepreneurial Journey Began in Cuba

Hispanic Entrepreneur Carlos Bernard Tackles Important Issues Outside of Work

Accidental Entrepreneur- My Second Big Break and It Was BIG!

Hispanic Business Key Is Quality Over Quantity

RELATED POSTS

Hispanic Business Owner Blenlly Mena and Next Stop Vegan

Hispanic Business Owner Blenlly Mena and Next Stop Vegan

A New York City vegan take-out Hispanic restaurant serves Latin vegan food Blenlly Mena is a charmer.  Even over a zoom call you can feel her warmth and ebullience.  She’s also a smart hispanic businesswoman whose take-out restaurant Next Stop Vegan, which serves...

Sustainable Fashion: Latino Businesses Setting the Stage

Sustainable Fashion: Latino Businesses Setting the Stage

The emergence of Latino-owned sustainable fashion brands The fashion industry has faced scrutiny for its environmental impact, from excessive waste to unethical labor practices. In response, sustainable fashion has emerged that emphasizes eco-friendly materials,...

Latino Streetwear Entrepreneur Balances Style & Struggle [Video]

Latino Streetwear Entrepreneur Balances Style & Struggle [Video]

Hispanic business owner Mathew Galvez's brand is a reminder of the strength and resilience Age does not limit success. You’re never too young or too old to start pursuing your ambitions. Mathew Galvez who started creating his business plan at the age of 16 while still...

Video Gallery

Modern version of Stoic philosopher Epictetus
A professional leads a cybersecurity training session for employees, emphasizing best practices. The photography captures the engagement of participants, showcasing the educational aspect of safeguard
Hispanic bearded male businessman trainer teaching coaching new recruitment African American female businesswoman employee in formal suit sitting studying learning company graph chart strategy
The presence of a robot using a computer. Office keyboard being typed on by machine. future IT group,.
Latino Streetwear Entrepreneur Latin Biz Today
Chef Lorena Garcia cooking with a wok
Latina Chef Loren Garcia
Latin Biz Today partner Johanna at the San Sebastián Festival

Polls

Which item currently represents the greatest hurdle in the growth of your business?(Required)

Sign Up for the Latin Biz Today Newsletter

PR Newswire

Featured Authors

Innovation & Strategy

Money

Four Basic Principles for Raising Capital

Four Basic Principles for Raising Capital

Outside investors want to understand a business' strategy as well as its financial statements.   The need to raise capital from outside investors requires a great deal of preparation across multiple dimensions. Among many things, investors look to understand...

Talent/HR

Legal

Marketing

Culture

Fashion

Food

Music

Sports

Work & Life

Mindfulness

Health & Fitness

Travel & Destinations

Personal Blogs

Pin It on Pinterest