Angela Scarfia is an exotic fruit influencer with a unique niche on Instagram and TikTok. She grew up in a low-income community in upstate New York without much access to a healthy lifestyle. This lack of access impassioned her to search for ways to become healthy, inside and out. She adopted a vegan diet and eventually wanted to find fruits that were healthier and more delicious than the apples, oranges, and bananas that most people eat every day. Now she is a part-time exotic fruit influencer with the goal of educating others about how to live a healthier lifestyle.
Have you ever had a fruit that tastes like cheesecake? Angela Scarfia has.
Angela is an exotic fruit influencer who was raised in Rochester, New York. She and her family lived in a low-income community that was limited in terms of access to a healthy lifestyle. People generally ate what they were told to eat or what they could afford. There was little to no access to education about how and what to eat in order to make yourself truly healthy.
This lack of access to a healthy lifestyle inspired Angela to take action. She began by transitioning to a vegan diet that was made up of whole foods, fruits, and vegetables. She tried to leave imitation meat and dairy products out of her diet as they were too processed. Her goal with her vegan diet was to eat foods that would really nourish her body.
“I started trying to transition my lifestyle to be healthier, and that’s how I learned more about eating plant-based and transitioning my diet to vegan. It was a two to three year process of learning and changing how I eat. And then through that awareness, that’s kind of where I got into fruits.”
Angela also decided that she wanted to expand her palate beyond the typical fruits that so many people seem to rely on. “[It] really excited me to just be exposed to fruit that tastes way better than apples, bananas, grapes, oranges,” Angela said. “It was an eye opener. This is an opportunity for health that people from my community don’t know about; people from my community don’t have access to. And it became a passion of mine to learn about it for myself, but then teach others about it as I go along.”
Today, Angela brings that awareness to her nearly 20,000 Instagram followers and over 30,000 TikTok followers. Her videos feature different exotic fruits from all around the world. Because these fruits are so unfamiliar to many, she offers instructions for consuming the fruits as well as some recipe inspiration. However, her journey to accomplishing her goal wasn’t exactly easy.
The biggest challenge Angela faced in the beginning was gaining access to the exotic fruits she wanted to try and teach people about. She would research native fruits every time she traveled and spent thousands of dollars importing fruit from other countries. She never gave up because she knew that she was doing something for the greater good of her community.
“Knowing that I was doing it for one, myself, but two, for others, was my inspiration and kept my motivation going. I have to keep doing this because the more I do it, the more access more people will have The more awareness people have of this product, the more people will demand it and potentially it will be more accessible in the future.”
The uniqueness of Angela’s platform is exactly what allows her to reach her target audience. She talks about exotic fruit in a way that makes it feel not so exotic at all. Her casual, fun, and friendly style attracts the type of people that she wants to attract: those who are interested in a healthier lifestyle but might not know where to begin.
“I have a lot of people from my community who are interested in being healthy and don’t know where to begin. And I think because I look similar and I talk similar [to them], I’m more relatable to them than some of these other fruit people who [have a more scientific approach].”
Her step-by-step videos and tips for eating different fruits make something that is so foreign to many seem completely doable. “When I talk about the fruit and I relate the fruit to things that they actually understand, I’m a little bit more relatable,” Angela said. “So I tend to attract people from my community, which is honestly my goal anyways.”
Now that Angela has been an exotic fruit influencer for a few years, she has been able to partner up with a few companies that support her endeavors. However, she is extremely selective. Angela makes it a point to only partner with companies that will offer her community access to exotic fruits. “I specifically now only work with either produce shippers and distributors or farmers. And that’s kind of about it,” she said.
Angela also makes it a point to only partner with companies that see the value in her work. It takes a lot of time to create her content, and she’s usually doing so into the wee hours of the morning. Content creating is Angela’s third job. During the day, she works at a college. She also runs a freelance leadership development session. Angela’s window for content creation opens around 5 p.m. and closes when she’s ready for bed.
Angela’s unique niche allows her to really focus on her target audience and accomplish her goal of bringing health awareness to communities that are just like the ones she grew up in. Today, there are more exotic fruit influencers than when Angela started, which is proof that she’s accomplishing her goal. More people around the world are interested in a healthier lifestyle through exotic fruits.