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Omsom

An Asian pantry staple brand offering meal starter sauce kits for creating authentic Asian dishes.

  • AAPI-Founded
  • Clean Ingredients
FOUNDER Vanessa Pham & Kim Pham
HEADQUARTERS Brooklyn, NY
Omsom

Behind the Brand

Omsom was founded by first-generation Vietnamese-Americans and sisters Vanessa and Kim Pham. Growing up in a predominantly white suburb, Vanessa and Kim spent much of their childhood feeling "othered" - and this felt especially prominent with the existence of the "ethnic" aisle in mainstream supermarkets. A reflection of an outdated view of America, the "ethnic" aisle is a hodgepodge of ingredients across various cuisines from communities of colour. In particular, they didn't feel seen or celebrated by most of the Asian products in that aisle. So they quit their jobs to build a proud and loud Asian food brand to reclaim and celebrate the multitudes in Asian flavors and stories. 

After initially creating a spreadsheet of 100 chefs that they could potentially partner with, Vanessa and Kim teamed up with 3 of NYC’s finest Asian chefs — Jimmy Ly of Madame Vo, Nicole Ponseca of Jeepney, and Chat and Ohm Suansilphong of Fish Cheeks — to formulate their first line of Vietnamese, Filipino, and Thai meal starters. Determined to create products with cultural integrity, they worked tirelessly to source 90+% of their ingredients directly from Asia. Within the first 2 months of launching, Omsom had shipped to all 50 states, and within the first year of business, it sold out 7 times and collaborated with Disney and Instant Pot. Today, the Omsom team continues to bring proud and loud Asian flavors — without diluted flavors or cultural compromise — into homes across America, proudly and loudly.

Meet the Maker

What has been your most unforgettable moment (good or bad) while building your company? - +

KIM: Hard to pick just one, but honestly it was such an honor to see Whole30, a huge organization that really shapes the way that Americans eat, remove MSG from their "Restricted" list - and explicitly cite Omsom as part of the reason why. It was a reminder that all movements start small + that living your values with heart is always worth it in the long run.

What is your favorite thing to do in your free time? - +

KIM: We both love to dance! Vanessa is learning how to DJ and I am a big raver!

What is an essential part of your daily routine? - +

KIM: We're both big journalers - setting aside some time for mindfulness (even if just a couple minutes) has transformed our ability to be intentional leaders.

What is your biggest pet peeve? - +

KIM: Loud chewers!

What is one thing most people don’t know about you? - +

KIM: That I love airplane turbulence!

What do you want to be remembered for? - +

KIM: For living my truth authentically as a queer Southeast Asian woman + daughter of refugees!

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