Ahmed Rahim: Steeped in the Spirit of Hospitality at Numi Tea [Ep. 98]

If you only have two minutes, click here for a highlight from the interview.


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Ahmed Rahim is Founder of Numi Inc. and serving as CEO and Chief Alchemist.  Before starting Numi in 1999 with his sister, Reem, Ahmed lived & worked in Europe for ten years. In the early part of the 1990's, Ahmed lived in Paris working as a professional photographer focusing on architecture and fashion, with works published in international trade and fashion journals including Elle, Prague Post, and Velvet. He spent nearly two years photographing the Middle East in places such as Iraq and Morocco. Ahmed eventually returned to Europe, this time ending up in the German Alps, continuing his photography in the music scene there where he performed as well. After a year Ahmed relocated to Prague, spending the next six and a half years there in filmmaking and photography. Towards the end of his stay in Prague, Ahmed was asked to help create and design teahouses. He then became a partner in a teahouse helping to expand and grow the business, and developed a deep love and interest in teas culminating in the creation of Numi's unique blends. Numi pioneered the introduction of teas such as Rooibos (red tea), Lemon Myrtle, Honeybush, Dry Desert Lime and others that were popular in Europe, but completely unknown in the United States. Ahmed is fluent in English, Arabic, French, German and Czech. He studied BA in Psychology and Theatre, from New York University, and has studied Film at various universities in Prague and in Paris.


Some highlights from Kevin’s interview with Ahmed include:

  • The story of how Numi differentiated itself from a seemingly saturated market by offering the purity of real ingredients and replicating success from other bioregions, introducing teas that had experienced success in European markets

  • Ahmed describes Numi’s core operating principles and how they result in beneficial social and ecological impact that scales as the company grows

  • Numi’s foundation and their work creating Waldorf-inspired schools in Oakland, supporting local nonprofits, and advancing clean water and other beneficial impacts internationally

  • Ahmed’s coalition building that brings together leaders in the sustainable food world to collaborate and create a larger beneficial impact







LIFT Economy is an impact consulting firm whose mission is to create, model, and share a locally self-reliant economy that works for the benefit of all life.

Andrew Baskin, Partner & Executive Producer at LIFT Economy, specializes in regenerative ag-related enterprise and impact investing that advances the health of our soil, food-system, and climate.  You can email Andrew at andrew@lifteconomy.com.

Kevin Bayuk works at the intersection of ecology and economy where permaculture design meets next economy organizations intent on meeting human needs while enhancing the conditions conducive to all life. He is a co-founder and  partner with LIFT Economy, the Senior Financial Fellow at Project Drawdown and a founding partner of the Urban Permaculture Institute.  You can follow Kevin on Twitter @kevinbayuk or email him kevin@lifteconomy.com.