New York-based organic food company acquires nutritional supplement maker Tenants Harbor
Power of 3 Nutrition, a Tenants Harbor startup, was acquired by certified organic manufacturer and distributor Tierra Farm, headquartered in Valatie, NY, south of Albany.
The acquisition, finalized on January 1, was announced this week. The terms were not disclosed.
Founded in 2011 by professional pilot Anne-Elise Stern, Power of 3 blends organic gluten-free seeds to add to smoothies, granola, yogurts, salads and more. Stern will continue with Tierra Farm as Director of Blended Products, overseeing the development of new protein products.
Tierra Farm, a $ 30 million company founded in 1999, distributes and manufactures certified organic, non-GMO, kosher nuts, dried fruits and chocolate; they dry roast organic coffees as well as nuts on-site in a peanut-free facility.
Pilot with lateral concert
Stern has been a professional pilot for over 30 years. She flew for United Airlines. His current long-time job is to fly a private owner’s business jet at Owls Head.
She is also certified as a holistic health coach and yoga instructor.
His company was born from his pilot experience. Spending half of her time traveling, she found that she needed nutrient-dense food to overcome the fatigue of flying across the country on a demanding schedule. Foods available in restaurants and airports lacked dense nutritional value.
âDue to the fact that I had a crazy schedule, I didn’t eat well,â she told Mainebiz. As a vegetarian, she said, she had assumed her diet was good, but she started to have a lot of body aches.
âI was in my early thirties and felt like I was 70,â she said. “I was tired all the time.”
A friend urged her to take a nutrition class. This led to receiving certification as a holistic health coach at the Institute for Integrative Nutrition in New York.
âAs I go through this, I realize that I wasn’t getting the nutrients I needed,â she said. âAs soon as I started to eat well, things changed. I felt young and vibrant, pain free, slept very well.
Courtesy / Catherine Brainard
The Power of 3 Nutrition product lines combine seeds for their nutritional value.
The biggest difference in her diet was the addition of seeds, she said. She visited a naturopath and found that the seeds “contain incredible essential nutrients,” she said.
On a personal level, she began to study their nutritional values ââand experiment with mixtures. After a year, she came up with a combination of hemp, chia, pumpkin, flax and spices. She remembered the bulb moment when she realized it was the right mix.
âOne morning I was having breakfast with the mixture and I said, ‘This is it’,â she recalls. âI was thinking clearly and I had energy. I tried not to have it to see if that made a difference, and it did. I was my own human trial.
She decided to try to make it a business. Tierra Farm has become her first supplier of seeds, due to the excellent quality of their ingredients, she said.
âIt was super important to me,â she said.
She created a signature product, PowerBlend. The product is intended to be sprinkled into dishes and drinks; she uses it, for example, in oatmeal, smoothies and salads.
She got her kitchen certified for food manufacturing, did the mixing and packaging herself, and started selling at farmers’ markets.
“But then it was too much for me, because it took very quickly,” she said. “I started selling to places like Whole Foods and Nutrition Co-ops in Maine and the Carolinas.”
Realizing that she couldn’t meet the demand on her own, she hired a co-packer. Activity continued to grow thanks to demand from the west coast. The product is now sold in more than 500 stores nationwide, including gourmet supermarkets Sprouts and Fresh Market.
Realizing that she needed to focus on her racing career, she contacted Tierra Farm to see if they would be interested in pursuing the brand.
Demand for protein products
Tierra Farm has a turnover of $ 30 million and 60 employees; revenues increased by $ 3 million in 2017 and 2018. The company has more than 200 products. 70% of the products come out in bulk; 30% is prepackaged. Its largest market is the Northeast, including 12 stores in Maine. Its biggest seller is cashew, which sells for around a million pounds a year, CEO Todd Kletter told Mainebiz.
Kletter said the acquisition is a strategic decision. While Power of 3 sales are expected to represent 2% of Tierra Farm’s revenue in 2019, he said he sees protein products as the ânext waveâ.
âThe nutraceutical supplement market is very large,â he said, citing products like protein shakes for workouts. âThe market is turning to people using natural and organic ingredients. “
It plans to develop the organic craft market segment through new branding and packaging, and to better educate consumers on its benefits.
Kletter said he was impressed with Stern’s energy, research and product.
âThere was nothing so exclusive about the product,â he said. âBut I liked her very much. She’s the story. We made a deal that we would look at her business and, if there was an opportunity to make an acquisition, we would. But the key was that she did. had to be part of it to move forward.
For now, he said, the Power of 3 line is temporarily closed while he pursues organic certification, rebranding and packaging redesign. He hopes to relaunch this summer.
âMy desire is to have an appearance that truly respects the roots of the product,â he said. âIt won’t be called Power of 3, but it will be something about how the product started. Her story will be on the back of the bag, and at the launch, she will demonstrate the product.