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Finest Kind Tea a Finalist in Crowd Funding Contest

Maine-based Finest Kind Tea is a finalist in Fresh Direct’s Next BIG Food Thing contest, a crowd funding contest created to “find the next food idea, product or innovation that could change the food world.”

Through the contest, which closes on December 17, 2013, Finest Kind Tea will have the opportunity to crowd source support for its new all organic tea concentrate using, an online crowdfunding platform.

Finest Kind Tea founder, Jay Lombard, is committed to using only sustainable, natural ingredients, and he pledges never to use high fructose corn syrup (HFCS) or artificial ingredients in any of his products. He is proud of the low carbon footprint of his teas—each bottle is filled with16 fluid ounces of concentrate that, when mixed with water, makes a gallon of tea or the equivalent of eight bottles of ready-to-drink tea. If Finest Kind Tea wins the Next BIG Food Thing contest, Lombard will use the proceeds to develop a tea made with organic, non-GMO, ethically-sourced ingredients.

Lombard started brewing his tea in small 80-gallon batches. This winter, he will increase production at a new facility on the coast of Maine to support expanded distribution throughout greater New England, greater New York, and eventually, nationwide.

The Next BIG Food Thing contest winner will be chosen based on a range of criteria including- amount of funds raised, funder engagement, and overall quality of the idea. The business with the winning idea will receive $10,000 and the chance to partner with FreshDirect, a food supplier in metropolitan New York and Philadelphia. Two runners-up will receive $2,500 each to fund their businesses. The judges include David McInerney, the co-founder of FreshDirect; Geoff Bartakovics, the CEO of Tasting Table; Natasha Case, the CEO of Coolhaus; Sarah Copeland, the food director of Real Simple; and John Craven, the founder of BevNet. Learn more at:

Chex Finer Foods Named 2013 Whole Foods North Atlantic Regional Supplier Partner of the Year

Chex Finer Foods was the inaugural recipient of the 2013 Regional Supplier Partner of the Year across all Whole Foods departments on November 15 and the first annual Supplier Appreciation Luncheon held by Whole Foods North Atlantic Region. Chex was also recognized as the 2013 Grocery Supplier of the Year. The two awards come as a result of dedication and a strong partnership with the Whole Foods North Atlantic region that spans almost 15 years.

“I am humbled to receive these awards and recognition from Whole Foods Market. I am proud of all the hard work and results that we have achieved together with our partner Whole Foods Market,” said Chex President Jeremy Isenberg. The Whole Foods award recognizes Chex for excellence in service, adapting to the changing needs in the marketplace, business insights, and for being Whole Foods’ “go to” distributor across multiple departments.

Founded in 1965, Chex Finer Foods is a 3rd generation family business. In December 2011, the company was inducted into the Food Industry Hall of Fame. In January, 2012, Chex Finer Foods moved its headquarters to Mansfield, Mass. where it doubled its warehouse and office space. Chex has been recognized by Inc. magazine as one of the top 5000 fastest growing companies for 2011, 2012 and 2013.

Inventure Foods to Present at Wedbush California Dreamin’ Consumer Management Access Conference

 Inventure Foods, Inc. has announced that Terry McDaniel, President and CEO, and Steve Weinberger, CFO, will present at the Wedbush California Dreamin’ Consumer Management Access Conference on Tuesday, Dec. 10 at 9:45 a.m. EST.  The conference will be held at the Le Parker Meridien Hotel in New York City.

The presentation and related materials will be available to all interested parties through a live audio webcast accessible in the investor relations section of Inventure Foods’ website at, where it will be archived for 90 days following the presentation.

About Inventure Foods, Inc.
With manufacturing facilities in Arizona, Indiana, Washington, Oregon and Georgia, Inventure Foods, Inc. is a marketer and manufacturer of specialty food brands in better-for-you and indulgent categories under a variety of company-owned and licensed brand names, including Boulder Canyon Natural Foods®, Jamba®, Seattle’s Best Coffee®, Rader Farms®, T.G.I. Friday’s®, Nathan’s Famous®, Vidalia Brands®, Poore Brothers®, Tato Skins®, Willamette Valley Fruit Company, Fresh Frozen and Bob’s Texas Style®.

Snikiddy Launches New Soy Ginger Eat Your Vegetables Flavor Exclusively at Kroger

Snikiddy®, a line of all-natural snacks made from simple, real-food ingredients, today announced it is introducing Soy Ginger Eat Your Vegetables® as an exclusive to Kroger stores nationwide. The Asian-inspired, veggie-packed variety will be available in more than 730 Kroger stores from coast-to-coast beginning at the end of October.

“The combination of soy and ginger deliver that umami (sweet, sour, bitter, salty, taste) all of our taste buds crave.  These flavor contrasts all packed in one is quickly becoming more and more popular in many of our favorite entrees, but finding this Far East combination in the snack aisle is very unique,” said Mary Schulman, Founder and Executive Vice President of Marketing for Snikiddy. “We left no stone unturned to perfect our new flavor and are excited to debut this completely unique snack to Kroger shoppers!”

Like all other Eat Your Vegetables varieties, the new Soy Ginger crisps are made with eight vegetables including kale, broccoli, spinach, tomatoes, sweet potatoes, navy beans, carrots and shitake mushrooms, and provide a full serving of vegetables per ounce. Snikiddy Eat Your Vegetables are a good source of vitamin A, C, E, B1, B6 and antioxidants. The chips also provide 3 grams of fiber and 3 grams of protein per serving from a proprietary blend of beans and brown rice. All Snikiddy snacks are all-natural, certified gluten and wheat free, made with non-GMO ingredients, and are completely peanut and tree nut free. Snikiddy Eat Your Vegetables are available in other fun, family-friendly flavors including: Sea Salt, Sour Cream & Onion, Jalapeno Ranch, Italian Herb & Olive Oil and Sea Salt & Lime.

The entire line of Snikiddy snacks are available at grocery, natural, specialty and family retailers nationwide, including select Target locations, Sprouts Farmers Market, The Fresh Market, Whole Foods Market, Toys ‘R’ Us, and Babies ‘R’ Us as well as online at

Babo Botanicals Products Help Keep Baby Clean, Safe and Comfortable

by Lorrie Baumann

Winter weather can be particularly tough on babies, whose skin is 70 percent thinner than adult skin and very susceptible to dehydration. Baby’s skin needs to be moisturized frequently with products that do not strip natural oils from the skin. Products should allow the skin to breathe easily and be free of irritants that can cause allergic reactions.

BaboGroupKate Bio

The Babo Botanicals products meet these requirements and are also all-natural, free of parabens, phthalates, gluten, synthetic fragrances and colors as well as nuts. “These are things that more and more kids and adults appear to have sensitivities to,” says Babo Botanicals owner and CEO Kate Solomon. “We wanted to make the most hypoallergenic products on the market.” The products are all dermatologist-tested, allergy-tested and tear-free.

Oatmilk Group 8041-8040-8042-9606Each of the product lines within the brand are formulated to provide specific solutions to problems that babies and their parents commonly experience. For dry skin or eczema, Babo Botanicals’ oatmeal and calendula shampoo, diaper cream, moisturizing lotion and body wash are the solution. For calming the fussy baby, Lavender Meadowsweet bubble bath and shampoo is great. Berry Primrose shampoo and detangler spray are the solution for tangled locks. The products are all made on a farm in upstate New York from pure flower and plant extracts.

They come from a mom with a background in working with farmers and who began her career with the Peace Corps by developing a beekeeping program for farmers in the Paraguayan village of San Antonio Guazu. Solomon had applied for the beekeeping program after raising bees with her father at the family home in Connecticut. “Paraguay was one of the few countries that had beekeeping as part of their agriculture program,” she says. With a grant from the World Bank, she was able to develop a very solid beekeeping program there before the end of her two-and-a-half-year assignment.

Home from the Peace Corps, she went to work for Avon Products. I was attracted to Avon because I wanted to go into a global personal care business, and I loved the Avon philosophy of women making extra money with their own personal care products businesses,” she says. “I’ve always wanted to have my own business, always. I come from a line of entrepreneurs in my family.”

While at Avon, she realized that she had a knack for developing brands and products, and she continued her career doing that for other companies, including, most recently, almost a decade with L’Oreal developing products for the professional market.

I realized I had a knack for developing brands and products, and I continued my career doing that for other companies. “I saw a real need for very high quality products using the power of botanicals for the kids that could be used by the entire family. The botanicals are important because plants and flowers can produce amazing results in a natural way. That’s better than depending on chemicals that may irritate the skin.”

She began developing the Babo Botanicals products after leaving L’Oreal in 2007 and launched the business in 2010. Babo Botanicals, named after Solomon’s son’s security bunny, was immediately successful in the marketplace. “It’s doubled every year, and we expect it to continue to double,” Solomon says.

The Babo Botanicals products retail from $12 to $14.95. For more information, visit



Saffron Road Awarded Best Halal Food Company at the Global Islamic Economy Summit 2013

Saffron Road, the packaged food brand of American Halal Co., was awarded Best Halal Food Company in the World at the prestigious Global Islamic Economy Summit (GIES) in Dubai, U.A.E. yesterday. The GIES is the equivalent of the Global Economic Forum of the Middle East and is facilitated by the Dubai Chamber of Commerce and Thomson Reuters as the world’s leading Islamic economy conference. The award was bestowed on American Halal’s Chief Executive Officer, Adnan Durrani, by His Highness Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum, before 3,500 registrants in attendance at the Jumeirah Arena Ballroom in Dubai. The Award celebrates global emerging companies that have demonstrated significant social and business impact and have inspired a new generation of leaders. Saffron Road was selected from a competitive list of applicants from more than 30 countries.

Adnan Durrani commented by saying, “We are so honored at American Halal to achieve the utmost level of global accolades by His Highness Sheikh Maktoum and the Global Islamic Economy Summit. I am so proud of our team at Saffron Road for our dedication to Halal values that not only meet the needs of the wider Muslim community, but are also being applauded around the world for our steadfast purity and excellence.  On the heels of Saffron Road winning Best Halal Product in the World at the World Halal Forum in 2011, in just a short period of time our impact on the global stage has been remarkable.”

The American Vegetarian Association Awards Eggland’s Best Certification

 For the tenth year in a row the American Vegetarian Association (AVA) has awarded its certification to Eggland’s Best.

The AVA certification acknowledges Eggland’s Best as a part of the American Vegetarian Association’s Global Certification program, which recognizes the standards of vegetarian assurance and enables vegetarian-minded people to make the best food choices. Eggland’s Best’s 2014 AVA certification assures vegetarians that by selecting Eggland’s Best products, they are receiving the very best vegetarian foods.

“We are honored that Eggland’s Best’s eggs are the only eggs to be certified and recommended by the American Vegetarian Association,” says Charles Lanktree, President and CEO of Eggland’s Best, LLC. “We are proud to be a part of AVA’s growing family of quality certified products, which allows consumers to trust our product with the highest vegetarian certification.”

The Eggland’s Best hen feed consists of a proprietary all-vegetarian feed of healthy grains, which gives EB eggs significantly better nutrition compared to ordinary eggs. As a result, Eggland’s Best eggs contain 10 times the vitamin E, four times the vitamin D and twice the amount of omega-3 fatty acids than ordinary eggs.  Eggland’s Best eggs also contain 25 percent less saturated fat and only 70 calories per egg.

For more information on Eggland’s Best eggs, please visit

America’s Best Organics Unveils New Gift Box

Just in time for the holidays, America’s Best Organics, provider of hand-curated, eco-conscious organic gift baskets, has introduced a newly designed, American-made gift box in which to present and ship its all-organic and earth-friendly gift box collections. Produced and printed in a zero waste facility in Denver, CO, the new keepsake gift box design was inspired by an original illustration from Colorado artist Matthue DeYarus.

America’s Best Organics is one of 19 Certified B Corporations participating in the launch of “B the Change,” a new consumer facing campaign from the community of Certified B Corporations, that celebrates and rewards people using business as a force for good. America’s Best Organics included the B the Change red logo on the side of the newly designed gift box as a demonstration of their commitment to raising consumer awareness of products produced by fellow B Corporations.

Additionally, the company unveiled a new look and functionality to its website,, to help ease and expedite the shopper’s experience in ordering and shipping gift box collections to any location in the U.S. New features to the website include a quick buy section on the homepage, updated graphics and images, and messaging to alert shoppers that ground shipping in the US is now included in the list price.

Christie Cookie Hires Industry Veteran as Corporate Chef/Regional Sales Manager

Tony_Schmidt_ChristieCookiesChristie Cookie has hired Tony Schmidt for a newly created position as the company’s Corporate Chef and Southeast Regional Sales Manager. Schmidt is a 2002 graduate of the acclaimed Culinary Institute of America in Hyde Park, N.Y. With almost 10 years of business and chef experience, as well as a degree in Hospitality Management and Masters in Business Administration, Schmidt will assist the company in growing its regional and national presence.

“Tony will play a key role in providing and implementing quality recipes and ideas,” said Jay McKnight, Director of Food Services at Christie Cookie. “His wealth of experience and industry knowledge is invaluable and he will be a crucial part of the decision making process at Christie Cookie. We are thrilled Tony has joined our team.”

Prior to working at Christie Cookie, Schmidt served as a Southeast Corporate Regional Chef with US Foods as well as Culinary Specialist Manager in their Atlanta branch where he managed the brands portfolio, the ten-member product specialist team as well as equipment and supplies buyers. Schmidt began his career as Assistant Sous Chef with Marriott International and continued with Marriott in various culinary and food and beverage leadership roles. As an active chef of the culinary community, Schmidt was a guest chef at the 2010 and 2011 Masters Tournament as well as being a mentor and judge for Georgia high school culinary teams. Schmidt is also very involved in the Atlanta Chapter of the American Culinary Federation and a ten-year supporter of the Hospitality Education foundation of Georgia.

As Corporate Chef, Schmidt’s responsibilities will include developing new recipes, oversight of research and development, and panel testing. In his Southeast Regional Sales Manager role, his focus will include recruiting, hiring, training, managing and motivating foodservice brokers.

Sullivan Harbor Farm Adds Two Double-Smoked Salmon Products to its Line

Dave's BaconJust in time for the holidays, Sullivan Harbor Farm Smokehouse has added two double-smoked salmon creations to its line-up of specialty smoked salmon and seafood products. Named after former SHF master smoker David Brooks, Dave’s Bacon is thin hardy strips of double smoked Atlantic salmon brushed with pure Maine maple syrup. Dave’s Omega Delight is aromatic cubes of double smoked salmon soaked in the same delicious syrup. Both are hand-cured and cold-smoked with hickory wood chips and a touch of cherry wood for rich, buttery, smoky flavor.

Dave's Omega Delights“Both Dave’s Bacon and Omega Delight are initially smoked for six hours. The cold smoke doesn’t heat the salmon. Instead, it touches each fillet gently and slowly, melding the flavors,” explains SHF’s master smoker Jamie Young. “After the first smoke, we slice Dave’s Bacon into strips and smother them in 100 percent Maine maple syrup. With the Omega Delight, we take the entire salmon and cut it into inch by inch cubes which are then soaked in maple syrup for several hours. The salmon is smoked for an additional six hours, sealing in all of the incredible flavors.”


SHF has been perfecting its technique and its repertoire of smoked products since 1993, when founder Joel Frantzman first opened a smokehouse in his house in Sullivan, Maine. SHF begins with the perfectly fresh fish raised and harvested responsibly from the cold, clean waters of the Bay of Fundy in the Gulf of Maine. The salmon is delivered to the smokehouse within hours of the harvest: the key to the absolute freshness of SHF smoked fish. It is then hand-cured using sea salt and brown sugar and smoked in small Scottish kilns using old-world techniques.

“Smoked salmon is a great healthy alternative to meat and other proteins,” said Joel Frantzman. “Whether you’re serving Dave’s Bacon as an appetizer or making a gourmet entree with the Omega Delight, the double-smoked flavor is sure to enhance everything from lunch-time snacks to holiday dinners.”

Dave’s Bacon and Omega Delight are available to order at in time for Thanksgiving and Christmas delivery. Visit the site or call 1-800-422-4014 for product quantities and pricing.



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