DURHAM, N.C. (WNCN) — Entrepreneur Jainaba Jenga is making it her mission to introduce African Cusine to the world.
Jeng is originally from The Gambia, West Africa and moved to North Carolina more than two decades ago.
Now, she is the founder of Raleigh-based Kitchens of Africa. The sauces and marinade company was born with a simple mission.
“Representation matters. I wasn’t being represented at my local grocery stores,” said Jeng. “And I’ve always loved food, I’ve always enjoyed cooking. It’s just something that my entire family and I’m very passionate about and I think this is a way to share a part of my culture and my heritage with the world.”
“Oprah’s name, once she endorses a product, people really believe in the products she endorses each year and just finding out that she sees me, she sees my little company, I mean that alone, it was overwhelming at first,” Jeng said.
The endorsement also sparked a boost in business. Jeng says orders have been non-stop and she only hopes to grow– taking people on a culinary journey through Africa.
“When they’re buying this stuff, it seems like they are welcoming me into their homes, I’m in their kitchens,” Jeng said. “I’m hoping that next year with this endorsement, it’ll bring a lot more opportunities to my door and continue to spread the gospel of African food.”