BeyondSKU, the nation’s leading accelerator for consumer-packaged goods (CPGs) in New York City’s tri-state area, has selected five companies for its upcoming Fall 2023 track.
The five brands encompass a wide range of food and beverage brands, from English muffins on a mission to make a social impact, and functional iced teas, to low FODMAP broths and seasonings. This is the fourth track for BeyondSKU which is in partnership between Austin-based SKU and BeyondBrands, New York’s top natural products consulting agency, launched in 2019. The cohort includes Dam Good™ English Muffins, Down to Earth, Gourmend Foods, Kekoa Foods, and Pinsa Love.
“Building on the continued success of the 20-plus tracks between our Austin and New York chapters, we are excited to kick off BeyondSKU Track 4 in September” Eric Schnell, Founder and Chief Executive Officer of BeyondBrands, said. “Along with our sponsors, including NieslenIQ and Ampla, I am proud that our New York-focused accelerator plays a key role in growing our local entrepreneurial community of small brands to become household names, while leveraging the collective wisdom of our diverse and talented group of seasoned CPG veterans who lean in deep with mentorship and networking.”
SKU, based in Austin, is the nation’s first CPG accelerator. Since it was founded in 2011, more than 120 brands have gone through the program, including such success stories as Epic Provisions, Siete, and DUDE Wipes.
Classes kick off in Manhattan on September 26 and run through December 12. The track will culminate on January 18, 2024 when the founders will present their pitches to an audience of investors, CPG leaders, and fellow successful founders. BeyondSKU’s curriculum covers topics important to CPG startups, including Mission + Vision, Branding, Investment, Legal, Channel Strategy, Supply Chain, and Innovation.
One of the most valuable components of SKU is its elite community of mentors from some of the most successful consumer product companies as well as successful CPG founders, subject-matter experts and investors. Each SKU founder is surrounded by a hand-picked team of mentors focused on helping them scale their businesses as they guide them through the program. In addition to the rewards of working with founders to help them achieve their potential, mentors benefit from the experience of working side by side with their peers.
“BeyondSKU provided us with an incredible opportunity to refine our brand, perfect our pitch, and build an incredible network of industry veterans,” said Paul Majcherczyk, Co-Founder of Fabalish. “In addition to the excellent coursework, we were assigned a team of dedicated mentors who gave us hands-on support in building our business and strategy. It has enabled us to take a big step forward as a brand. Thank you BeyondSKU!”
The innovative Food & Beverage cohort includes:
Dam Good™ English Muffins
Dam Good™ English Muffins is a woman-owned, family-operated, purpose-driven company committed to revolutionizing the English muffin market. Their mission is to provide wholesome sourdough English muffins that not only taste Dam Good™, but also help to “Do Dam Good™.” They craft square-shaped, handmade, vegan, non-GMO, seed oil-free, and preservative-free sourdough English muffins that prioritize health, and social impact.
Down To Earth
Down To Earth is a functional iced tea brand that is on a mission to reconnect consumers with the nourishing and hydrating properties of the Earth in its most natural state. Its product line includes ready-to-drink teas that are made from the highest quality superfoods, teas, and adaptogens, and contain no added sugar, no artificial sweeteners, no preservatives, no added colorings, and range from 0-10 calories per bottle.
Gourmend Foods is a certified B Corp, that specializes in clean label, gut-friendly cooking essentials, and all products are low FODMAP certified. Gourmend broths and seasonings replace stomach symptom-causing ingredients like onion and garlic with the highest quality, flavorful, gentle alternatives. All products are organic, gluten-free, dairy-free, preservative-free, flavoring-free, and GMO-free. Production is done entirely in the U.S. and all products are sustainably packaged.
Kekoa Foods manufactures shelf-stable, nutritious, organic, palate-expanding, veggie-rich food purees free of added sugars and salt for adventurous eaters ages 6 months plus. They launched in January 2022 online with three purees and in 2023, expanded into retail nationwide with 400 stores and seven products. Each recipe contains delicious global flavors like curry, basil, shawarma, and ginger to foster children’s openness and appreciation for tasty, nutritious food for life! They are the only LGBT-Certified owned, two-dad brand in the baby food space.
Pinsa Love is an elevated at-home pizza option that doesn’t sacrifice taste and texture and provides pizzeria-quality pizza at home. Because traditional Roman Pinsa is always baked twice, the second bake is done at your home — it’s just like eating at a tiny Tuscan pizzeria.
For more information about BeyondSKU, visit the website here.