Anudeep Mukkamala, who knows exactly how it feels starting from scratch and was barely surviving a day, is now a distinguished agricultural entrepreneur in Texas. AnM Farm became the major supplier of vegetables in fine dining restaurants in Texas. He was also named Farmer of the Year in 1998. Anudeep also managed to build a factory for processing and packaging their products to meet export requirements which lead to the establishment of AnM Fruits and Vegetable Dealer. Mr. Mukkamala owes the growth and success of his farm and business to the farmers he hired to help him establish his name. During this challenging time, he knows exactly what the people living below the poverty line and even those who just couldn’t afford to serve meals on the table are going through, and so he always makes it certain that he helps in every way possible.
How did you get started in this business? What inspired you to start this business?
I grew up in farm. But as ironic as it can be, I did not know anything about farming. My father was a great farmer, and he spends a lot of his time in the farm. He’s friends with a lot of farmers in town, and they all work together in taking care of the crops. He taught me his ways in the agricultural field when I was already 15. I realized how vital our farmers are in the society. I saw what my father was trying to invest on, and so we started the AnM Farm. We expanded and grew bigger in a couple of months, and we realized that we can actually cater to a much varied and heterogeneous market. We invested more on our resources and people, and we were able to supply to different restaurants in town. After a while, we made it to the export industry. We couldn’t have done everything without our farmers’ dedication and hard work, of course all thanks to my dad as well.
When you were starting out, was there ever a time you doubted it would work? If so, how did you handle that?
I never doubted the agricultural industry. I never doubted my dad and his skills. I never doubted the farmers. I never doubted the potential of the business. But, I doubted myself. I didn’t think I could actually be of help in the business, with my dad, for the farmers. But with my perseverance and determination, I enrolled to different agricultural classes and attended trainings and numerous seminars to better understand how the industry works.
What is one marketing that you’re using that works really well to generate new business?
More than anything, it’s the connection and honesty. You will not have to chase after customers when you always make sure that you’re honest in what you do, you give them what they deserve and ask for, and continually communicate with them on either how to better improve your products and how to better serve them.
What is the toughest decision you’ve had to make in the last few months?
Nothing much in the last few months. But if we go back from the very start, I’d say it’s the giving up of my fruit and vegetable stalls. That was my proof back then that I have successfully welcomed the ways of my dad and the fruits it bore were just very fulfilling to me. But looking back at it, we will never grow this successfully if I had not given that up.
What do you think it is that makes you successful?
The genes of my dad. All thanks to him that I was able to see the importance and need of agricultural services in our town, and that there really are people who would help you no matter how big of a favor you ask them. I could always thank these people every single day for putting me and my father into where we are now. Each milestone is a celebration of everyone’s dedication, passion, and heart for their craft.
What are your plans for the future?
I am also a supporter of the Learning Disabilities Foundation where I provide their foods and supplies. Before this year ends, my goal is to give fruit and vegetable supplies to the majority of homeless people. We have already started just three months ago. It’s not yet too late to help the people in need, especially during this pandemic. I know it is not much, but I’ll continue helping as long as I live. There are more ways to help than just giving foods and material things. If you can’t help that way, a simple kind gesture like smiling and maybe praying for everyone in the world already makes a big difference.
What piece of advice would you give your younger self?
Invest your time and effort in people who want to see you do better. When you doubt yourself, turn to people who you know will help you climb up and not drag you farther down. You’ll be unsure of a lot of things, but always remember that you have the right people around you. Don’t be scared, just do what feels right.
What is your favorite quote?
It’s by John Steinbeck, and it goes “And now that you don’t have to be perfect, you can be good.”