From CPA to Food, she has it all

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A profile shot of Shakirat Edoho, wearing an orange jacket.
A profile shot of Shakirat Edoho. Akin Oyebode

Shakirat Edoho combines her skills and passions to do meaningful work

Roller coaster journeys are always awe-inspiring. Even having gone through a vast array of experiences, people still choose to do what they truly believe in and love. Surrounded by food since childhood, Shakirat Edoho, Certified Public Accountant (CPA) and Certified Management Accountant (CMA), talked about following her passions as something that “A lot of people like to do but don’t want to do.”  

She was born and raised in Nigeria, a country in West Africa, where she lived until she was 18. She graduated from the University of Saskatchewan with an undergraduate degree in Business Economics. To build more into this degree and progress in her career, she decided to get her accounting credentials, starting off with getting her CMA and then moving to CPA. Edoho has spent most of her professional life working in municipal governments – City of Saskatoon, City of Regina, Saskatchewan Economic and Gaming Authority, and eventually worked with the Saskatoon Police as well.  

An avid lover of management accounting who enjoys process efficiencies and modifications, Edoho was drawn to food out of love and passion. Fascinated by agriculture, she “wanted to be a farmer because it blew [her] mind how you could grow a greener corn and you could get so many corns out of a green.” Every passion needs a first step, and Edoho started food blogging while she was working as an accountant. Her food blogging page on Instagram, @9jafoodie, now has almost 332,000 followers with content ranging from food recipes to breaking food myths.  

Since then, she has also built up her venture Atare Foods, which she describes as “an umbrella company for a group of companies including JC Agro, Atare Food Products, and LIN Nutrition Health.” Her other pages like LIN (Lose it Nigerian) which focuses on nutrition education today has 146,000 followers on Instagram (@loseitnigerian), and focuses on developing healthy food goals and building a sustainable balanced diet for better living.  

Talking passionately about jollof, “which is a base for a super popular West African dish,” Edoho mentioned how “as a generation, we’re using that ability to cook at home, but a lot of people don’t like to do it because it takes time.” Introducing modern cooking and combining it with convenience and health in one of her product lines Edoho stews jollof and presents it in a reusable jar so that it can be mixed in with rice or other ingredients, ready to consume. Edoho emphasized the “communal experience” that food brings as we can share culture with people through food. In her service line, Edoho has Lose it Nigerian which focuses on personal modifications for people who are battling with food. With her team of “recipe developers, registered dietitians, nutritionists, [they] approach those people and help them to carve out lifestyle modifications using their food.” They have reached over 10,000 people across 80 different countries.  

Coming from a business background herself, Edoho has been surrounded by determined, powerful women such as her mom who is an entrepreneur in the fashion space. “I had something to offer that nobody else was offering,” said Edoho. Using her accounting and economics education, Edoho today has successfully built a company undertaking her own smaller companies as well.  

Her new venture which she referred to as her “baby” JC Agro is still developing, and the goal is to “look at the environmental impact of international food import.” She firmly believes that to start something it is imperative to “know the why – that’s the most critical thing. Because why you’re doing something will always impact your growth and acceleration in that space.” With Canada being a multicultural community with a lot to offer in terms of food, Edoho has taken this opportunity and evolved it into a business that continues to make lives better. 

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