Two weeks ago a chopstick meme went viral showcasing that you could break a chopstick horizontally to turn into a holder. However, try as you may, it will not work with regular chopsticks on the market.
After seeing the meme, 28 year old entrepreneur Mylen Fe Yamamoto sensed an opportunity to launch Cropsticks to the public sooner than later. The patent pending idea came to her in April 2015 when she was on a flight and her chopsticks kept rolling off the tray table. Thinking to herself on the long flight, she came up with the idea for an embedded rest and the goal to make it an eco-friendly product.
With her co-founder Jay Chang whose family has over 15+ years in the bamboo manufacturing business, and team members Ron Tansingco and Shannon Takeba, together they launched a Kickstarter (see here: www.kickstartcropsticks.com). It is currently funded at 45% towards their $20,000 goal with support from celebrities and national news publications. Investors and international Asian chain restaurants have also reached out since launching.
"I never in my wildest dreams would have thought this could happen so fast for an idea I came up with on a plane," said Yamamoto.
Yamamoto graduated from Moanalua High School and runs a talent management company that helps to build the careers of celebrities like The Fung Brothers and LeendaDProductions. She recently brought celebrities like Arden Cho from Teen Wolf and Wong Fu Productions to the islands. She is also a Professor at Loyola Marymount University.