REINVENTING STORE-BOUGHT GUACAMOLE
The Happy Avocado is a start-up that began with two friends who were fed up with seriously bad guacamole sold in grocery stores. Our mission is to reinvent store-bought guacamole by changing a 30-year-old preservation standard and introducing fruit infusions to the $1 billion guacamole market. With a passion for experimenting with creative guacamole combinations, we spent months perfecting our recipes, speaking with experts like the head of R&D at Pepsico, and then bringing the products to farmers' markets, we created something that guacamole has never seen before. Our guacamoles have fresh, high-quality ingredients and bright flavors like mango guac, fresh crab & lime guac, and roasted corn & cherry tomato guac. Together, we're creating something totally new and revolutionizing the way people buy guacamole.
**UPDATE** As of May 2017, we've won 1st place, the People's Choice Award, and $4,000 in capital funding in an entrepreneurship competition!
A BRIEF HISTORY
Once known as the alligator pear, the avocado wasn’t always the popular super-fruit it’s known as today. Back in the 40’s, few people knew what it was and didn't have the slightest clue of how to cook with it. To incorporate it into the American diet, avocado farmers formed associations and fought hard to make them a household staple, but it just didn't stick. A few years later, in the 60’s and 70’s, doctors began to advise patients to cut down their saturated and unsaturated fat intake. Avocados weren't recognized for their health benefits, but were instead slandered for being unhealthy. Fast forward to the 90’s and avocado farmers finally struck gold by teaming up with the NFL. They advertised guacamole during the Super Bowl as the must-have game day snack. Today, Super Bowl Sunday boasts the most avocado consumption out of the entire year; sales of the delicious fruit have been steadily increasing 30% per year since 2003.
Its main competitor quickly caught onto this rapidly increasing space in the dip market, and responded by diversifying their products. Before the turn of the millennium, salsa companies began creating every flavor imaginable: chipotle, habanero, bean, southwest, corn. You name it, it was created. Thus began the race to dominate the American dip market.
Today in 2017, there remains an enormous gap in sales between the salsa and guacamole markets. Salsa rakes in over a billion dollars in annual sales, while only about 400 million dollars are spent on guacamole. Because of the flavor diversity, affordability, and ease of preservation with salsa, the guacamole market has always been a step behind salsa in terms of sales. With the soaring popularity of guac, why is this gap in the market still so large?
If we compare the two, there haven’t been many advancements or innovations in guacamole. It’s a simple recipe that hasn’t yet seen the unique flavors or combinations that salsa has. Even more, guacamole has a delicate structure that people have failed to be efficiently preserved. To say it struggles on grocery store shelves would be a gross understatement.
When walking around a typical grocery store, one can see powdered guacamole, squeeze-able bottles, fake guacamole dip (which contains little to no real avocado and many more calories), or plastic sacks and trays of guacamole. While the plastic trays use real avocados, they use immense pressure which sucks the air out of the packaging to preserve their guacamole, rending the texture similar to that of baby food. With only these lackluster options, it's no surprise why people generally choose the easily-preserved, cheaper, and diverse competition.
The Happy Avocado is introducing a completely new idea to guacamole: a creative line of combinations with fresh, bold flavors and all-natural, clean ingredients. To sustain the life of our guacamole, we use proprietary technology to replace all oxygen with a mixture of CO2 and nitrogen. Avocados are delicate fruits which turn brown when in contact with oxygen for too long: this process is known as oxidation. By replacing the oxygen in our jars with modified atmospheric pressure (a combination of CO2 and nitrogen), we're able to prevent oxidation for up to four weeks while retaining the full flavor and texture of fresh guacamole. Our goal is to change the way guac is thought about and consumed by bringing quality, variety, and most importantly, creativity to guac. We're shaking up the market in a way that's never been seen before.