SAN FRANCISCO — Sweet Nothings, a maker of organic, plant-based smoothies, is launching its first children’s products this month. The launch of squeezable smoothies in Whole Foods Market stores across the country is one of many recent milestones for the San Francisco-based startup.
Packaged in “kid-friendly” tubes, the squeezable smoothies are formulated with organic fruits, vegetables and chia seeds. Flavors include Pineapple Spinach, Mango Carrot, and Strawberry Beetroot. The products are marketed near bagged frozen fruit, which “denotes the versatility of the occasion” and nutrient-dense ingredients, said Jake Kneller, co-founder and CEO.
“We held focus groups with parents and learned more about when a product like this might fit into their lives and the lives of their children,” Kneller said. “It wasn’t something they thought would replace an ice cream full of cane sugar and fruit juice. It was, ‘This could replace a tube of yogurt or a string of cheese or applesauce.’ … You would never put a dessert in the frozen fruit category, so there’s a lot of credibility and a lot of flexibility that comes with that placement.
The products, which are free from the eight major allergens and manufactured in a dedicated facility, will also be available for purchase through online retailer Thrive Market.
“Parents who want their kids to eat more fruits and vegetables, or who are looking to avoid dairy for allergies or other reasons, can throw this in a lunch box instead of that tube of yogurt or string cheese, and the kid loves it,” Kneller said. “They think they’re having a dessert. It’s sweet, fragrant, a little bit tangy. really healthy option.
The brand’s flagship line of single-serving, plant-based, no-sugar-added spoon smoothies is rolling out to more outlets. After successful testing, the products will be available in select Kroger divisions this summer, Kneller said. Sweet Nothings Spoon Smoothies contain a blend of fruits, vegetables, nuts and seeds. Flavors include Strawberry, Dark Chocolate, Peanut Butter, Tropical Greens, Blueberry, and Mango.
Co-founder Beth Porter, a lifelong entrepreneur with a passion for health and wellness, developed the first recipes years ago in her kitchen following her young daughter’s decision to go on a diet. vegetarian. The products, packaged in to-go cups containing a teaspoon, have been designed to deliver the benefits of a homemade smoothie with no prep or cleanup required.
Renowned packaging will soon be rolled out, designed with vibrant hues and clearer communication to stand out on the shelf. Distribution gains and the addition of children’s offerings bring the brand’s retail footprint to 2,500 doors, Kneller said.
Last fall marked the introduction of shelf-stable snacks containing fruits, nuts, oats and flax seeds, which are now sold on Amazon.com.
“We’ve been at it for a month, and it’s really been a hit from a volume and review standpoint,” Kneller said. “Our intention around this line was that there are places where we want to meet our consumer that we cannot with frozen. It’s a product that looks innovative but is still healthy, nutrient dense, with super clean ingredients, and it’s not a “me too” product. It’s unlike anything out there.