Adventures in LlamaSite: A #foodforce Success Story

Melissa Hill Dees
4 min readMay 5, 2022

Once upon a time…isn’t that the way every fairy tale starts? Once upon a time, the Salesforce #trailblazercommunity got together on a regular basis. Sometimes it was a few people at a local community group meeting; sometimes it was several hundred at a volunteer led community event, like Northeast Dreamin. And, once a year, it was several thousand at Dreamforce. In March of 2020, all that stopped very suddenly. Not only could we not congregate in real life, we could not even go out to eat. In an effort to be “social”, folks started posting pictures of what they were cooking on Twitter. In an effort to engage, Sarah Orens and I started tagging photos #foodforce when we saw something yummy. Pretty soon the hashtag turned into a Twitter handle.

Follow #foodforce on Twitter:

Everyone thought the pandemic would be over within a matter of weeks, maybe a couple of months, but as time dragged on, some pretty interesting dishes were getting tagged for #foodforce. Sarah and I began to think it might be fun to have a way to actually share the recipes themselves. Mike Demaria mentioned that he had done a little prototype of a cooking app in a Salesforce dev org and asked if that would be helpful. I was working on the beta of a brand new AppExchange product called LlamaSite. Mike and I installed his app in a Salesforce instance and we bought a domain and created Literally, this happened in the space of about two hours. Now our #trailblazercommunity cooking friends could share their recipes and search for other recipes. Super simple. Super fast. And NO maintenance. (In fact, it’s been running perfectly since November of 2020 without anyone doing anything.) We didn’t want to put too much effort into something that was probably only going to last as long as the pandemic. Who knew the pandemic would last what seems like forever?

#foodforce website brought to you by LlamaSite

Fast forward a year. The pandemic has STILL not released us to return to all the gatherings we love. But we still have to eat, right? #SalesforceMVP Ines Garcia approached #foodforce about creating a cookbook, specifically recipes that were plant-based and climate-focused. Ines would lead the project; the cookbook would be available to purchase; and, all the proceeds would be donated to charity. This was exactly the sort of impact Mike and Sarah and I had discussed as we implemented! How exciting that our little venture might be able to impact the world by contributing funding and raising awareness.

#Foodforce for Good: The 101 plant-based deliciousness of the world

#Foodforce for Good: The 101 plant-based deliciousness of the world went on sale on Amazon on 11 April 2022! Ines recruited nutritionist, Naomi Szakacs, to provide tips and information on nutritional value in the recipes. Mike DeMaria spent hours in his kitchen testing and refining recipes. These three: Ines, Naomi, and Mike authored this book in their spare time, probably between 2 and 3 am. Other participants on the project came from across the globe: Rob Cowell (UK), Jen Bowen (USA), Eric Praud (Ireland), Gary Polmateer (USA), Helen Garcia (UK), Shun Kosaka (Japan), Giuseppe Cardace (Switzerland), Bonny Hinners (USA), Zoe Lai (Australia), Trish Perkins (digital nomad), Mary Tagler (USA), Christie Fidura (UK), and Melinda Smith (USA). The recipes are as varied as the Salesforce practitioners who submitted them. Plus, to quote a reviewer on Amazon: “Nice tips along the way and interesting facts about cooking methods.”

Thank you to everyone who contributed!

A lot has happened since March 2020. The #trailblazercommunity makes this season of uncertainty and unease a little better by sharing their recipes and the stories that go with them. Food is the universal language and every culture can relate. Working in the Salesforce ecosystem with SalesforceOrg, Salesforce Partners, and #SalesforceMVPs made this adventure possible. I am grateful to be a part of the team at HandsOn Connect Cloud Solutions; not only is the LlamaSite donated, they actively support initiatives to #domoregood. This book is like a fairy tale come true.

Next steps?

  1. Buy #Foodforce for Good: The 101 plant-based deliciousness of the world and support awareness and funding for eating in a way that helps slow climate change.
  2. Contribute your recipes and their stories at We are already entertaining the idea of a second cookbook and #foodforce just introduced a rating system in the LlamaSite. The top 100 best rated recipes and the stories behind them seems like a great algorithm for the next #foodforceforgood cookbook.
Melissa Hill Dees

Partner @handsonconnect @llamasite Founder @Nonprofit Dreamin #SalesforceMVP Champion of #domoregood #WiT #EqualityForAll 9X @salesforce certified. #speaker