Photo Courtesy of Colleen Mader.

Spotlight: Go.Nuts with Shahad Hamwi

The Gazelle speaks to NYU Abu Dhabi Shahad Hamwi, Class of 2023 and owner of an environmentally friendly nut butter business. We discuss her inspirations and how her brand promotes sustainability and nutrition.

Apr 18, 2021

If you’ve ever said, “I’m seriously addicted to nut butter,” you’re not alone. The worst thing that can happen is craving almond butter and finding yourself without a jar in sight. What would you do if that happened to you?
This is exactly how Shahad Hamwi, Class of 2023, launched herself into a new business. She started her nut butter business, Go.Nuts, after she ran out of almond butter in the middle of the night and decided to try making her own.
“I remember waking my dad up and making him taste what I made,” she recalled. “He was quite impressed — but not so much when I told him I burnt the motor of our food processor.”
That was the first of many broken food processors in her journey to launching Go.Nuts in 2019. She had just graduated from high school and was only 17 when she started the business.
At NYU Abu Dhabi, Hamwi intends to study film, with sustainability and health remaining important parts of her life. She is involved with Student Interest Groups Ecoherence and VeggieMight and is an avid runner and climber. When not busying herself with these activities, you can find her cooking or dipping dates in nut butters.
Go.Nuts is a brand that sells all natural nut butters, free of added sugars or oils. The flavors range from traditional peanut and almond butter to mastica pistachio and cacao hazelnut. Her goal for the business is not only to increase accessibility to nutritious and delicious products, but to encourage sustainability as well.
Photo Courtesy of Colleen Mader.
“When I started brainstorming my concept for Go.Nuts, I needed to identify what would make me unique in the market of nut butters,” Hamwi shared. “So I thought about all the things I hated about store bought nut butter: excessive plastic packaging, unnecessary ingredients and limited flavors.”
Hamwi’s entire business aims to avoid these issues. From products to packaging, the entire company is plant-based. She only uses glass jars that can be reused and her labels are made from biodegradable materials.
This was a significant challenge in the beginning, as she had to source these ingredients and materials herself. Since she was only 17 when she started the company, she also had to rely on her parents for the legal aspects, such as licensing. “They were always there for me and I am super grateful for that,” Hamwi added.
Besides using environmentally friendly ingredients, she also wanted to make nourishing foods more accessible. She strived to show that healthy foods can be incorporated into any lifestyle.
“I try my best to break the stereotype that healthy food is ‘high-end’ and expensive. I want Go.Nuts to be a product that can be used in any household kitchen.”
Her consumer base reflects that goal, as people of all ages and backgrounds purchase from Go.Nuts. “My customers range from parents making their kids’ lunches, to chefs for recipe development, to teens using the butters for açai bowls and smoothies,” Hamwi explained.
Although the company is less than two years old, Hamwi thinks they have made an impact already. She believes her brand leads by example, showing others that it is possible to have a business model focused on sustainability and nourishment. She is also proud to know her tasty products have led more people to understand whole food ingredients can be used without compromising on flavor.
“Through our social media, event pop-ups and other appearances in markets, I genuinely feel that Go.Nuts has allowed me to reach out to my community and educate them about the importance of food, ingredients and, of course, how delicious nut butter is,” Hamwi said.
You can order Go.Nuts products from her Instagram page The brand is trade licensed in the UAE.
Colleen Mader is a staff writer. Email her at
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