Screen shot 2013-05-29 at 3.18.55 PM


John W. Roulac is the Founder and CEO of Nutiva®, one of the world’s leading brands of organic hemp foods and coconut oil. A longtime advocate for holistic living, Roulac is the author or coauthor of four books that have collectively sold more than one million copies: Backyard Composting, Hemp Foods and Oils for Health, Hemp Horizons, and Industrial Hemp: Practical Products.  


Cooked: A Natural History of Transformation by Michael Pollan


The food served in most restaurants might taste good, but not only is it usually not nutrient-dense; it also may include many substandard ingredients that are likely genetically modified (GMO). In Cooked, Michael Pollan heads to his own kitchen, looking to make food that tastes better without the use of industrialized food goop. I’m inspired by this book because my company is revolutionizing how the world eats by providing ancient organic superfoods: coconut oil, hempseeds, chia seeds, and red palm oil.  These are ingredients everyone can use in their kitchens to make delicious, healthy food.


We also need to educate more people on why GMOs are not a healthy choice. This is one of the reasons why I started, which is helping empower people to create a non-GMO world before it’s too late and Monsanto gene-splices hundreds of crops into GMOs. Cooking at home is the best way to start on the path to greater health and happiness.


The Way of the Wyrd by Brian Bates


This historic novel tells of the journey of two main characters, a young Catholic priest and a shaman, and explores the ancient philosophies of the Celtic culture.  I am fascinated by ancient cultures and how people lived before so-called “modernization.” The Way of the Wyrd shows how their daily life was so intertwined with nature, as opposed to current times when we have to make a concerted effort to step away from technology and into nature. Highlighting the ways in which our modern culture plays a role in disconnecting us from the environment, this is a powerful novel for those intrigued by how people lived before iPhones, computers, and the internet.


Delivering Happiness: A Path to Profits, Passion, and Purpose


by Zappos CEO Tony Hsieh 


The book focuses on how great corporate culture can lead to unparalleled success in a business; Tony Hsieh shares how he built Zappos, one of the greatest online retailers in the world. With Nutiva’s growth, I want to ensure that our company culture stays in the forefront of our priorities.  Some of my favorite takeaways from this book are the importance of “wowing” customers and the significance of having your employees stand behind the company core values. Any business owner or employee can pick up a few tips to guide their business to increasing success.


John W. Roulac helped jump-start the modern home-composting movement in the early 1990s, successfully sued the US Drug Enforcement Administration to keep hemp foods legal in 2001, and has founded three nonprofit ecological groups. In 2009 and 2010, Nutiva® was on the prestigious list of the Inc. 500/5000 of the fastest-growing companies in America. For more information on Roulac and Nutiva®, visit


Nutiva® is one of the sponsors of the 2013 Hemp History Week, June 3-9: