Immigrant Women Entrepreneurs Europe

We are Women Migrentrepreneurs. Finding our place, making our mark.

Fumiko Kono

La soupe de Fumiko Kono from sooishi on Vimeo.

I came across Fumiko Kono through a documentary film I borrowed from the public library. But I found her story so interesting and inspiring that I thought I’d share it here.

Born and raised in Japan, she came to Paris in 1993 at the age of 37. There she didn’t only find a new home, but her life’s passion and calling too. She came to Paris without knowing a single word of French but through sheer will and diligence, she mastered the language. Neither did she have any background in culinary arts. Out of curiosity, she signed up at Le Cordon Bleu and worked her way up. She is now a celebrated chef a domicile who lives between Paris and Tokyo and travels the world to bring her talent to privileged kitchens and dining tables. She has come out with her own book of recipes:

What I take from her story is that it’s never too late to start a new career path. Doing so might just be the way to finding one’s  true calling. And being true to one’s roots and being open to another culture may just be the ticket to carving out a niche and to being successful. Finally, to have a food business, it’s not necessary to have a brick and mortar restaurant with all its overhead. One can ride the growing trend of “Private Chefs” where people, instead of going out, eat good food at home and entertain in the comforts of their own home.


Filed under: Ideas, Inspiration, , , , , ,

2 Responses

  1. Sara says:

    I’ve appreciated this post so much 🙂
    The Fumiko’s story is so amazing and important for us to make ideas clear about our way of life and our way in the business world.
    At this point, I would like to know more about her experience, also because food and diet are something so fascinating: I strongly believe that quality of food will become more and more important in our life, very close to our health.
    Also the idea of domicile cooking is winning to me. Some weeks ago, I met a woman, natural cooking chef, that organizes cooking classes at one’s place.
    The need of knowledge about food and the relation between food and health will become stronger and stronger!

    Thank you to share this with us 🙂

    Sara (Ale’s cousin)

    • Hi Sara! Thank you and I’m glad you found it interesting. You are right about the growing need for food knowledge in relation to good health. People are now more conscious are are moving towards healthier lifestyles and trying to eat better (It’s one of my resolutions too!!)
      As for the trend of mobile businesses (private chefs, private cooking classes), it is quite on the rise as entrepreneurs are looking for ways to launch their services with low overheads and start-up costs. There is also a growing demand for it as consumers see that it is possible to do so and are looking for novelty experiences.

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