Plant-based brand launches beet jerky

17 Nov 2022

Theo’s Plant-Based has launched beet Jerky, a vegetable-based beef jerky alternative, made with organic beetroot and spices that taps into a cleaner, sustainable food system preferred by consumers.

The product, which is Certified Organic, commits to using minimally processed, gluten-free, paleo, vegan, whole vegetable, and nutrient-rich ingredients.

Plant-based brand launches beet jerky
© AdobeStock/ulada

“We are thrilled to officially bring our brand to market, beginning with our delectable beet Jerky,” said co-founder Theo Mourad.

“Our goal is to actively change the way people think about plant-based foods by showcasing vegetables to be savoury, delicious plant-based meats that are also clean and genuinely healthy.”

Available in sea salt & cracked pepper, sesame ginger teriyaki, and savoury barbecue, the snack adopts a back-to-basics approach with the use of such organic ingredients as red beets, avocado oil or toasted sesame oil.

Other ingredients used include rice vinegar, cane sugar, coconut aminos and natural hickory smoke flavour. Each packet contains the equivalent of one large beet.

A ‘health and nutrition hole’ in plant-based innovation

According to Theo’s, which is based in Chicago, a “gaping health and nutrition hole” developed in the industry when early plant-based innovators focused on the meat-mimicking taste and texture.

“Theo’s envisions a future where organic, regenerative vegetables are at the centre of the plate – and where neither taste nor nutritional value are compromised,” the firm said in a statement.

Mourad, who previously worked in Blue Hill at Stone Barns, the two-starred Michelin restaurant in New York’s Hudson Valley, created beet jerky during the early stages of the pandemic.

He then teamed up with childhood friend and co-founder Aaron Brodkey, who works as programme manager at Big Idea Ventures, a VC and accelerator fund specialising in alternative and environmentally friendly foods.

“We are equally as passionate about supporting the environment,” said Brodkey. “Theo’s stands for high-quality, real, vegetable-forward, organic, and plant-based food.

“But we go beyond these adjectives to always pursue better quality and sustainability in the products we create,” he added.

“We support vegetable farmers who respect and maintain the environment, and everything we do is rooted in sustainability through our supply chain, manufacturing, packaging, and more.”

Theo’s selected for Whole Foods Accelerator Program

Earlier this year, Theo’s Plant Based was selected as the US Midwest region representative in Whole Foods Market Local and Emerging Accelerator Program.

The initiative, which provides mentorship, education and the potential for financial support to promote business growth, gave Theo’s the opportunity to become Whole Foods Market suppliers and gain placement on the shelves of their home city’s Whole Foods Market stores.

As a result, the BEET jerky will become available at Whole Foods and Pop Up Grocer stores in the Midwest region from January 2023 onwards.

The brand, which soft-launched on 17 August 2022 now plans to roll out additional lines of vegetable in 2023 and beyond, where the startup will offer more innovative, clean recipes rooted in the brand’s organic, vegetable-forward ethos.

Further plans for the brand include its participation in 1% for the Planet, a global project that accelerates smart environmental giving, where Theo’s will donate at least 1% of their annual sales to further healthy food access in Chicago.

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