Sunshine Nut Company and The Lion’s Den DFW

A sweet baby girl eats with her friends in Mozambique

On March 22, DBU will host The Lion’s Den DFW for the third year. “The Lion’s Den is a Christian business pitch competition that creates financial, educational, and missional opportunities for both entrepreneurs, seeking to grow their businesses, and investors, looking to gain financial returns, who are unified in a vision to utilize profits to make a missional impact locally, nationally, and globally.”

"The flavor of God’s goodness is also evident in the expressions of His kindness, mercy and love that permeate all the decisions and actions of the company."

At the 2017 event, Sunshine Nut Company was a huge crowd favorite. The company roasts, packages and sells amazingly delicious and fresh cashews from Mozambique. Who wouldn’t love that? But that is not what won the hearts of the audience. Rather, it is the company’s mission and the way they are executing that mission that stands out.

Sunshine Nut Company was established in 2011 by Don and Terri Larson. Don has a wealth of experience as the Director of Cocoa Operations for Hershey. Currently, Sunshine Nut Company employs 30 people and sells their product on their website, Amazon, at Whole Foods, and at other retail outlets in the USA. Many of the staff come from a local children's centers. In addition to providing a transformational work environment for these employees, the company invests 30% of their profits to develop and transform the families and communities of cashew farmers who supply the raw cashews. Another 30% of profits go to building Sunshine Houses where widows and orphans are brought together to build communities. An additional 30% is set aside for future company developments that also support their missional philosophy.

Sunshine Packages

Psalm 34:8 says, “Taste and see that the Lord is good.” God’s goodness is expressed in many ways through the Sunshine Nut Company. They use the fruit of the land to produce delicious food for their customers. But the flavor of God’s goodness is also evident in the expressions of His kindness, mercy and love that permeate all the decisions and actions of the company. This for-profit business is a great example of how followers of Jesus should join Him in restoring God’s creation holistically among those who desperately need to know of the love of God.

Suggestions for how to respond:

  • Pray for Sunshine Nut Company as they seek to faithfully serve God in Mozambique.
  • Buy their products and encourage your friends to buy them!
  • Come to The Lion’s Den DFW on March 22, 2018 at Dallas Baptist University to see other like-minded businesses pitch their business.

About Business as Mission

The mission of the Center for Business as Mission at Dallas Baptist University is to educate and equip current and future business leaders to restore lives through effective engagement in the business marketplaces. This is accomplished by integrating God’s biblical call to mission with His vocational call to business.

Written by Dr. Ross O'Brien

Dr. Ross O’Brien is an Associate Professor of Management in the College of Business at Dallas Baptist University, and the Director of the Center for Business as Mission, which educates and equips aspiring business leaders with the integration of God’s calling to mission and business.