Teymour was born in Cairo, Egypt, a country whose rich agricultural history has earned it the moniker “Mother of the World.” His weekends were spent on the family farm where he developed a deep appreciation for the human connection to fresh food - not only in taste but in its smell and the feel of its weight in your hand. Teymour spent a lot of time in his grandmother's kitchen, a wonderful woman who insisted on cooking only with vegetables in season. This, he learned, was the secret to the unbeatable flavor.
CEO, Team Bon Harvest
Teymour el Derini
This lesson stayed with Teymour, and as an adult, he helped to launch a series of successful restaurants. His main profession, however, was in financial services. Following a decade-long career in finance, Teymour decided to pursue a masters at NYU. There he was shocked to learn that roughly forty percent of American produce goes uneaten each year - up to $200 billion in waste - the majority deemed unsellable due to cosmetic oddities or minor bumps and bruises. These statistics struck Teymour deeply; discarding edible produce was not only unthinkable on principle, but it also seemed unconscionable in a country where over 40 million Americans were food insecure or lacking nutritious options. And if these were the statistics in one of the world’s leading developed countries how much waste was hiding in the global agricultural system?
Inspired to take action, Teymour launched Bon Harvest in 2016. As a restaurant owner, Teymour had learned of the inefficiencies and lacking transparency in the food service industry, and he knew the struggle faced by food service providers faced with wildly fluctuating markets and archaic inventory systems. As a child, Teymour had seen firsthand the struggle of farmers, and he felt a strong desire to empower farmers and share their stories. He knew that if only people could learn their stories, stories of the food that nourishes our bodies and the people who grow it, real and positive change could take hold that would help the food growers, preparers, and eaters alike.
Favorite Vegetable: Mushrooms
Megan thrives on challenging the collective story of
‘impossible.’ A nature-loving futurist and holistic health nerd with an insatiable curiosity for this whole being human thing,
CSO, Team Bon Harvest
Megan is the chief story-teller at Bon Harvest. Her vision is to return a sense of wonder to the experience of food, reconnecting us to its remarkable journey, to the hands that nurture it, and to the power of our choices, every day.
Previously, Megan helped to co-found a start-up to develop mobile aeroponic technology in response to global food insecurity and the refugee crisis. She was inspired in this line of work by both her time in anti-trafficking in India and an intensive study she authored to explore the nexus of global poverty and climate change and the potential/limitations of social entrepreneurial impact. From embassies in Moscow to slums in the red-light district of Kolkata and from Park Avenue private equity firms to zen monasteries in Japan, Megan has embraced adventure, curiosity, and connection to find herself humbled and inspired by life and the stories of those who live it.
Megan is also a jazz-singing salsa-dancing zen-sitting amateur raw food chef who is sometimes funny and often has garden dirt under her nails.
Favorite fruit masquerading as a vegetable: Tomato
Daniel graduated from New York University in 2018 with a double major in Mathematics and Computer Science. He started programming in his freshman year of college and developed a passion for coding after realizing how easy it was, or so it seemed at that time.
CTO, Team Bon Harvest
Originally planning to pursue a career in actuarial science, he realized before graduating that he found more fulfillment in developing innovate new projects and decided to drop everything to work in the volatile world that is the startup industry.
He first worked as a data engineer at Psonya and later joined the Bon Harvest team in December 2018.
Daniel is also an avid chess player, ranked both nationally and internationally, and can sometimes be spotted playing in Washington Square Park or at the famous Marshall Chess Club.
His favorite color is without a doubt blue, and his favorite fruit is, naturally, blueberries.
Shalaby grew up in Cairo, a vibrant city loaded with top notch fresh juice and sensational street food - surrounded by the lands that grow them all. He travels a lot to remind himself that Cairo’s just glorious, but also to broadcast his unsolicited opinions on every dish he can try (and photograph) from around the world.
He’s into tech and launched a few startups over the years - proudly failing in most of them, and luckily exiting in some. He’s particularly interested in the cross section between data and tech, and how it can help us eat better and cheaper, while protecting farmers and rewarding restaurant goers like himself.
He likes to think of himself as a sophisticated chef that really knows how fresh food brings fantastic taste, but he’s clearly just another overly-confident Cairene man.
When he’s not telling stories from all of the data he gathered, he works on spreading information that can maybe change the world for the better and bring about social justice for everyone. He also hosts a web series on socio-political change.
CDO, Team Bon Harvest
Favorite vegetable: Mango (Oweiss) from Ismailiya, Egypt.
Melissa was born and raised in Istanbul, Turkey. She grew up in a culture where food was very valuable and it never went to waste. She moved to the US to pursue her undergraduate degree in Environmental Studies at Skidmore College.
Team Bon Harvest
Her interest in food and food waste was inspired in observing the amount of food going to waste on campus and in restaurants in town.
During her time studying abroad - traveling around Vietnam, Morocco, and Bolivia - Melissa realized the impact a culture has on people’s perception of food. She completed her studies at Skidmore College, conducting a feasibility study for a composting program for local restaurants.
Melissa then moved to New York, where she completed her masters in Sustainability Management at Columbia University. Now she is more interested than ever in eliminating food waste by leveraging the use of data.