Our Founders

Sarela Herrada, Co-Founder, SIMPLi

Sarela Herrada, Co-Founder

Sarela Herrada is the co-founder of SIMPLi, along with her husband and co-founder, Matt Cohen. A longtime proponent of season-driven, organic agricultural practices, she has also long understood the injustices faced by small farmers who are hampered by, among many challenges, a lack of access to broader markets. Sarela was born and raised in Lima, Peru, where her family owned and operated an organic chicken farm and her father worked with farming communities in the Amazon, growing superfoods like camu camu. She moved to the U.S. with her family in her early teens. After earning an industrial engineering degree from Penn State University, she embarked on a supply chain and food management career with an eye toward creating a fairer and more just food system. Building on key roles at Mayorga Organics and Nike, Sarela developed and led the food and beverage supply chain team at CAVA – the largest Mediterranean restaurant group in the U.S. – before launching SIMPLi in 2020, with her then-fiancé, Matt Cohen. Through SIMPLi, Sarela brought to market the first Regenerative Organic Certified (ROC) ingredients from Peru to the U.S. In late 2022, Sarela was appointed to the board of directors of the Regenerative Organic Alliance (ROA), the 501(c)3 organization that oversees the certification process. Her broad range of talent in domestic and international operations, supply chain management, and sales, along with her passion for fighting food fraud while helping developing communities around the world, is reflected in SIMPLi’s array of ethically-sourced, nutrient-rich, award-winning pantry products. 

Matt Cohen, Co-Founder, SIMPLi

Matt Cohen, Co-Founder

Matt Cohen, an entrepreneur, seasoned finance professional, and champion of regenerative organic agriculture and equitable business practices, is the co-founder of SIMPLi, along with his wife and co-founder Sarela Herrada. Born and raised in Annapolis, Maryland, Matt developed an entrepreneurial drive and a passion to do meaningful work at an early age. A graduate of the Salisbury University Perdue School of Business, he spent over a decade developing his robust finance career, working in the Capital Markets Group at Fannie Mae and managing corporate development and innovation at Choice Hotels International, before launching SIMPLi in 2020. With SIMPLi, Matt and Sarela are ethically sourcing nutrient-dense, single-origin pantry ingredients from South America, Europe and beyond, supporting smallholder farmers with resources and fair wages that simplify and transform a flawed food system into one that is equitable and regenerative – good for the planet, people and producers. Matt’s holistic approach to understanding business models across all industries, and his broad range of skills – from strategic partnership execution to creative marketing, technology, sales, and mergers and acquisitions – help SIMPLi stand apart as an innovative and responsible food company.