Cannabis in the Wellness Space

Cannabis in the Wellness Space

Image Source: Mondo   With recreational marijuana legalized in 9 states, and medical in 29, there’s been a huge influx of cannabis infused food products. But customers are chasing more than just a high these days – cannabis is more commonly being used as an ingredient in wellness forward brands. Enter a world of well curated, function-focused brands which feature THC, CBD and hemp as ingredients to fulfill a variety of purposes.   Image Source: Kikoko The combination of cannabis with other healing foods can create effective natural remedies for everyday maladies. By using different levels of THC (the compound responsible for the high), and CBD (which helps to alleviate pain, anxiety and other issues), products can be formulated for specific purposes. Case in point, Kikoko offers a line of cannabis infused teas which are individually created to reduce pain, aid sleep, increase libido and boost mood. Prominent call-outs on the packaging specify whether the product contains low, medium or high THC levels so that the consumer may make an informed decision about what kind of effects to expect. Similarly, Stillwater’s cannabis teas and coffee are marketed as “The Natural Way to Manage Daily Stress”, and are prominently labeled with THC content on front of package (a low 2.5MG dose). Mondo is cannabis sold in powder form, allowing the consumer to precisely measure the dose they’d like to consume in order to experience natural anxiety relief, without sacrificing the alertness and productivity necessary to carry out daily tasks.   Image Source: Weller Many of these products lend themselves to regular use, much like a vitamin or other natural supplement – often,...
16 Female Powered Food & Beverage Businesses

16 Female Powered Food & Beverage Businesses

We’re fortunate to work with amazing entrepreneurs; true partners building brands for a new generation. A recent Forbes article on female Food & Bev Entrepreneurs led us to reflect on all of the driven, innovative and overall badass women that we’ve been fortunate to encounter in our work. These individuals are responsible for bringing wildly innovative products to the forefront of the industry. Each with their own unique voices and stories. Women are underrepresented as entrepreneurs, making up only 36% of new business owners since 2012. (Source) But as Beyonce once said, “girls, we run this mother” and today we shine a light on that beautiful 36% percent in the hopes of inspiring others to make it 50-50! While most of the individuals we mention here are founders and CEO’s, we also work with countless female brand managers, marketers, strategists, creatives, account managers and other roles that are fundamental to the success of a business. 1051 GOODONYA Founder and CEO Kris Buchanan C.N. opened the GOODONYA deli with a passion for serving up locally sourced, organic and delicious food. Over the years she’s overseen launches of even more locations, landed the GOODONYA bar in Whole Foods, and helped formulate the 1051 Organic Sports Drink. Her unwavering commitment to quality of food and kindness as a lifestyle have set a shining example for entrepreneurs everywhere. AccelFoods Sometimes, brilliant companies need a leg up – especially in the food and beverage industry. Jordan Gaspar (a former corporate lawyer) and Lauren Jupiter (previously an investment banker) co-founded the incubator AccelFoods to launch innovative natural food startups to success. Both bring their solid backgrounds...
Ask the Team: What Brand Would You Redesign?

Ask the Team: What Brand Would You Redesign?

Some of the most successful food brands have enough staying power that their packaging stays recognizable over the course of time. Yet, target demographics are constantly shifting and though a brand can still be relevant, shaking things up provides an undeniable intrigue. We live for companies that push the barriers of the packaging world. So what would we redesign? Here are a few responses from the team. If I could redesign any brand it would be Nutella. I feel like Nutella and La Croix have the same mentality of “we’ve already cornered the market, so who cares what our packaging looks like”. The illustrations are outdated and uninspiring and it’s clear this packaging design hasn’t been touched in years. Now that the Nutella wordmark has so much recognition, there is a great opportunity to either minimize it or use just parts of it – similar to what Coca Cola has done in past packaging refreshes. The brand has achieved a level of status that not many brands are lucky to attain and they now have license to reinvent themselves for the next generation of Nutella eaters. – Kelley Smart food white cheddar popcorn. This is a classic product from our generation – it’s one of the very first “healthy”, yet indulgent gas station snacks. It is truly a nostalgic; think road trips, sporting events, that beloved after school treat. The packaging seems unchanged, old and busy. I would love to see Smart Food to get a modern facelift to match it’s still VERY relevant place in the grocery and gas station aisles. -Abby I’d redesign the kid trifecta: Fruit By the...
Outdoor Friendly Foods

Outdoor Friendly Foods

Boulder is home to a population of climbers, skiers, hikers, rafters and all manner of adventure hungry thrill seekers. Whether setting out for a week long backpacking trip or a quick afternoon hike, the right kind of food and beverage is key. The active food category has always been a little sleepy, as we’ve seen a lot of the same brands dominate freeze dried foods and energy bars. But as consumers are becoming increasingly likely to spend more on sustenance that is convenient, new and eye grabbing options are popping up to intrigue the appetites of outdoor enthusiasts.   HEATHER’S CHOICE This company features a diverse selection of organic freeze dried dinner entrees, breakfast options and snacks.   TIGER NUTS Touted as superfood, this lightweight snack packs a heavy nutritional punch with high protein and fiber content. Organic Gemini offers them as snacks in a variety of flavors, as well as in the forms of tiger nut based flour and beverages. TRAIL NUGGETS These bars communicate functionality as an active snack, with natural energy and protein – despite having similar ingredients to other bars in the category. FISH PEOPLE Tuna pouches are a staple for backpackers and campers. This gourmet option offers a step up in flavor, but not in difficulty to prepare in the wild. STEALTH Stealth energy gels by Secret Training convey energy with the vividness and movement of its packaging. NUUN  These hydration tablets are packaged in a conveniently lightweight and reusable structure, a huge plus for active lifestyles. ALPINE START Great coffee that can be prepared with either hot or cold water can be your best friend...
Premium Snacks Increase in C-Stores

Premium Snacks Increase in C-Stores

When stopping by a convenience store for a snack, it’s typical to be met with a selection of processed, sugar laden and high sodium choices. Big food brands have dominated these spaces for as long as we can remember. However, as consumers are leaning toward more online retail options, c-store shelves are starting to make room for more products that cater to individual lifestyles. Staples like jerky, sports drinks, coffee and candy remain stable in the space, but more premium alternative options are being introduced to the mix. Personalization is shaping the future of the convenience food industry. Fresh food options are getting dressed up from the highly processed clamshell packaged sandwiches and microwave burritos typically found in convenience stores. Retailers like GetGo and Wawa now offer made-to-order fare for any time of day – all accessible via touch screen kiosks. Even airport retailers are upping the quality of their offerings. No longer limited to conventional snacks and chain meal options, travellers can now expect a wide variety of curated foods at CIBO Express Gourmet Markets. CIBO embraces established and emerging brands alike for a premium food and beverage experience on-the-go. In addition to being threatened by online retail, c-stores are experiencing direct competition in the form of Bodega – a fledgling company which sets up location specific pantries that appeal to the demographics of those particular areas. “The idea is to preempt what people might need, then use machine learning to constantly reassess the 100 most-needed items in that community.” (Fast Company) This would negate the need to visit a storefront, as the most demanded product per location...
Trend Watch: Healthy/Fast/Sustainable

Trend Watch: Healthy/Fast/Sustainable

Sustainability efforts revolve around the three R’s: Reduce, Recycle and Reuse. One of the most opportune spaces for eco-friendly change lies in food and beverage packing. There’s been an influx of biodegradable packaging, but the zero waste movement takes focusing on the Reuse aspect a step further by forcing the consumer to provide their own containers for commodities. It’s hardly a new concept – milk was often delivered in reusable glass bottles, with consumers incurring a small returnable deposit for the container. But with today’s consumers are on the hunt for healthy and convenient food option, the concept of Reuse is coming into play more often. Boulder’s own Wonderpress is a humble testament to great quality of life. Transparent glass bottles with eye catching gold accents showcase the vibrant colors of juiced fruits and vegetables. Customers are charged a deposit for these containers and are encouraged to return them, but they can just as easily be repurposed for water or your own nut milks and juice concoctions. Tyme, a “fast food” start-up based in New York, serves vegan meals in transparent rigid plastic jars. These containers can be reused, and when doing so, will earn you a $1 discount on your next meal. They are reshaping the concept of fast food, which we tend to associate with far that is greasy, fatty and certainly not vegan. This level of convenience combined with a sleek and sustainable structure is already making a splash and the company founders are already hoping to expand outside the New York area, and eventually drive down costs.   In Chile, a brand of movie theaters called Cinemark...