We had the good fortune of connecting with Eugenio Mendoza G. and we’ve shared our conversation below.

Hi Eugenio, where are your from? We’d love to hear about how your background has played a role in who you are today?
I was born and raised in Venezuela, and when we emigrated to the US in 2016 leaving everything behind, we knew it was going to take time and hard work to start from scratch – with nothing but our principles, ethics, business acumen and tenacity to survive and thrive. Four years ago, my wife and I made the decision to leave Venezuela and come to the US with our two boys. Many people make their careers traveling all over the world, but it is quite another thing to decide to leave everything you know and love behind, with no inkling of when or if you will ever come back to your home. In Venezuela, most of us were entrepreneurs by default, because from CEOs of large companies to its employees and from young founders of startups to government employees, had to deal with a reality in which nothing was standard, stable, readily available, and most importantly, nothing was ever guaranteed. With national production coming to a halt, everyday needs became scarce and so company executives, employees, founders and government employees had to reinvent either their companies or themselves just to cope and even to survive. This is why I categorically identify myself as an entrepreneur, even when I worked for three years as an executive at Banco de Venezuela when it was still owned by Grupo Santander, I felt and conducted myself as an intrapreneur. So, when I arrived in the US, I knew that whatever I did and wherever I worked, I was going tackle the task as an entrepreneur. And after a few years of getting my sea legs, in 2018 I founded RUJI Naturals along with two other co-founders: Roberto J. Arguello and Jose Antonio De Cote. Where I employ the same grit and tenacity I needed to survive in Venezuela. Grit that tells me there are no problems that cannot be solved combining a little creativity and a lot of hard work. RUJI Naturals is one of the first Pet Wellness companies to incorporate successful superfoods from the human industry and transition them into the pet industry. We were the first company to develop a dog supplement using the superfood Moringa, a tree that grows abundantly in tropical climates and is known in ancient cultures as the “Tree of Life”. Moringa packs more vitamins, minerals, amino acids and antioxidants than Kale, and has been used to treat various metabolic deficiencies and boost the immune system, among others. For decades, the traditional pet industry has been focused on profits at all cost, giving little importance to the quality of their ingredients and the detrimental effects they might have on our household pets. Furthermore, veterinarians are prescribing more and more pharmaceutically engineered medications for pets, often causing side effects and more complications to their health. We founded RUJI Naturals to be more than a pet supplement brand, it’s a pet wellness lifestyle we created to provide healthier options so we can feel good about the ingredients our pets are consuming. Using superfoods, we innovate products that taste great and provide holistic alternatives to traditional, pharmaceutical medications. At RUJI we believe a long and healthy life is the real treat.

Alright, so for those in our community who might not be familiar with your business, can you tell us more?
I was born and raised in Venezuela, and when we emigrated to the US in 2016 leaving everything behind, we knew it was going to take time and hard work to start from scratch – with nothing but our principles, ethics, business acumen and tenacity to survive and thrive. Four years ago, my wife and I made the decision to leave Venezuela and come to the US with our two boys. Many people make their careers traveling all over the world, but it is quite another thing to decide to leave everything you know and love behind, with no inkling of when or if you will ever come back to your home. In Venezuela, most of us were entrepreneurs by default, because from CEOs of large companies to its employees and from young founders of startups to government employees, had to deal with a reality in which nothing was standard, stable, readily available, and most importantly, nothing was ever guaranteed. With national production coming to a halt, everyday needs became scarce and so company executives, employees, founders and government employees had to reinvent either their companies or themselves just to cope and even to survive. This is why I categorically identify myself as an entrepreneur, even when I worked for three years as an executive at Banco de Venezuela when it was still owned by Grupo Santander, I felt and conducted myself as an intrapreneur. So, when I arrived in the US, I knew that whatever I did and wherever I worked, I was going tackle the task as an entrepreneur. And after a few years of getting my sea legs, in 2018 I founded RUJI Naturals along with two other co-founders: Roberto J. Arguello and Jose Antonio De Cote. Where I employ the same grit and tenacity I needed to survive in Venezuela. Grit that tells me there are no problems that cannot be solved combining a little creativity and a lot of hard work. RUJI Naturals is one of the first Pet Wellness companies to incorporate successful superfoods from the human industry and transition them into the pet industry. We were the first company to develop a dog supplement using the superfood Moringa, a tree that grows abundantly in tropical climates and is known in ancient cultures as the “Tree of Life”. Moringa packs more vitamins, minerals, amino acids and antioxidants than Kale, and has been used to treat various metabolic deficiencies and boost the immune system, among others. For decades, the traditional pet industry has been focused on profits at all cost, giving little importance to the quality of their ingredients and the detrimental effects they might have on our household pets. Furthermore, veterinarians are prescribing more and more pharmaceutically engineered medications for pets, often causing side effects and more complications to their health. We founded RUJI Naturals to be more than a pet supplement brand, it’s a pet wellness lifestyle we created to provide healthier options so we can feel good about the ingredients our pets are consuming. Using superfoods, we innovate products that taste great and provide holistic alternatives to traditional, pharmaceutical medications. At RUJI we believe a long and healthy life is the real treat.

Let’s say your best friend was visiting the area and you wanted to show them the best time ever. Where would you take them? Give us a little itinerary – say it was a week long trip, where would you eat, drink, visit, hang out, etc.
Start with a great home BBQ, made by yours truly. Then maybe spend a morning at Knaus Berry Farm in Homestead where you can pick fresh strawberries, drink great milkshakes and order cinnamon rolls that you will never forget. Finally, soak up some science and culture visiting the Frost Science Museum and the Pérez Art Museum.

Shoutout is all about shouting out others who you feel deserve additional recognition and exposure. Who would you like to shoutout?
First and foremost my parents, my siblings, my wife and my children that teach me something new every day. As to a book that had profound resonance in me at a crucial time in my life: Atlas Shrugged by Ayn Rand.

Website: www.rujinaturals.com
Instagram: @rujinaturals
Facebook: RUJINaturals

Image Credits
Roberto J. Arguello Get in the Ring with Inspiralia

Nominate Someone: ShoutoutMiami is built on recommendations and shoutouts from the community; it’s how we uncover hidden gems, so if you or someone you know deserves recognition please let us know here.