Los Angeles, CA—Minority-owned Naturade launched VeganSmart organic all-in-one nutritional shakes with an eye towards making healthy choices more affordable and accessible, particularly within the African-American community, according to a press release.
Kareem Cook, CMO and co-founder of VeganSmart, and Claude Tellis, co-founder, partner, and CEO, met while attending Duke University, the press release says. Given how many family members and friends they had who were affected by diet-related illnesses, they decided to help—first by starting a healthy vending machine company that brought change to the Los Angeles Unified School District, and then by acquiring Naturade. In 2013, they met John Lewis, a vegan advocate and fitness expert, who explained that a plant-based diet was the best way to prevent obesity, pre-diabetes, and heart disease. The three partnered together to create VeganSmart.
Tellis said in the release: “Because we’ve both lost people we love due to diet-related illnesses, everything we do is with the health of the African-American community in mind. We aspire to create Whole Foods premium products at Walmart pricing so we don’t limit accessibility, especially in the country’s food deserts.”
Their new protein powder serves up 20g of plant protein, along with fiber, an enzyme blend, vitamins and minerals, all while being soy-, gluten-, dairy-, and cholesterol-free—and the latest USDA Organic shakes are, of course, also non-GMO. And, apparently, they taste great: “Our new shakes are the direct result of listening to our customers,” says Cook. “They wanted the same great taste they’re used to from VeganSmart, but organic. There are two things we refuse to compromise on—ingredients and taste. It took finessing to get the product perfect, but we nailed it.”
“Our new flavors are out of this world, I can’t wait for everyone to try them,” Lewis added, noting: “We have our Vanilla Crème, Chai Spices, Chocolate Fudge and Wild Berries, with Chocolate Fudge and Wild Berries also available in single serving packets.”