IFA Strategic Initiatives
Tariq Farid Joins IFA Hall of Fame
This award, IFA’s oldest and most prestigious, is presented to an IFA member, past or present, who has contributed significantly to the advancement of franchising and the franchising community. Tariq Farid, CFE launched Edible Arrangements in 1999 from a storefront in East Haven, Conn. Opened first franchise location in 2001. Today there are more than 1,300 franchise locations worldwide.
Tariq Farid, CFE, was born in Pakistan in 1969 and immigrated to the U.S. when he was 11. He grew up in West Haven, Conn., and became a U.S. citizen in 1986. Farid’s experience as a teenager working at a local McDonald’s taught him the value of business systemization. At age 17, he borrowed $5,000 from his parents and family friends to buy a flower shop in East Haven, Conn. Within two years, he was operating four successful stores.
After seven years as a florist, he came up with an inventive new idea – sculpted fruit bouquets that customers could eat. Farid was inspired by Americans’ growing consumption of fresh fruit, steady growth in the specialty foods market, and the increasing amount of money Americans were willing to spend on gifts. Converting this inspiration into entrepreneurial effort, says Farid, would change both his world and the gift industry forever.
Farid launched Edible Arrangements in 1999 from the East Haven storefront, and opened the first franchise location two years later, in Waltham, Mass. Today there are more than 1,300 franchise locations worldwide.
In addition to fresh fruit arrangements, the company’s product line now includes chocolate-dipped fresh fruit, beverages, fruit salads, and “grab-and-go” products.
A strong believer in the franchise business model, Farid takes every opportunity to promote franchising and its role in providing a path to business ownership for franchisees. Edible Arrangements’ success would not have been possible, he says, were it not for franchising and the opportunities it creates.
Farid is a former IFA Entrepreneur of the Year, a member of IFA’s board of directors, and a founding sponsor of the IFA Foundation’s NextGen in Franchising program. Keep an eye out for a more in-depth article about Tarid in the March 2018 print edition of Franchising World. Find out more about franchising at Edible Arrangements.