Did you know that at least 1/3 of all food is wasted?
Approximately $1 trillion of food is lost or wasted every year — accounting for roughly one-third of the world’s food. According to the U.N. Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO), reversing this trend would preserve enough food to feed 2 billion people . That’s more than twice the number of undernourished people across the globe. – World Food Program USA
One effective way to address this serious issue is by upcycling and transforming that waste into high-value food products.
One of the more interesting (read tasty) product categories for upcycled food is snacks.
These healthy snack brands are all producing great products in the fast-growing upcycled food market. They are also members of the newly-formed Upcycled Food Association.
What Is Upcycled Food?
One of the first acts taken by the Upcycled Food Association was the formation of a task force to formalize a definition of “upcycled food.” They produced a summary paper that outlines the definition elements of the term.
According to the association, “Upcycled foods use ingredients that otherwise would not have gone to human consumption, are procured and produced using verifiable supply chains, and have a positive impact on the environment.“
Upcycled Snacks Brands
The Ugly Company
The Ugly Co. was founded by Ben Moore, a 4th generation farmer in Kingsburg, California.
Growing up on a farm that grew everything from stone-fruit to wine grapes, Ben always thought that throwing out fruit because it was ugly was normal.
Then he had an epiphany in 2017 during that year’s devastating hurricane season. He read about people starving for lack of food. He was dumbfounded that people were going without food and he had just personally discarded 300 tons of edible fruit.
2-4 million pounds of fruit is wasted at farms within a 15-mile radius of Kingsburg, CA each year. This fruit is thrown away mostly for cosmetic reasons, because it’s ugly.
I’m convinced that we can prevent all of this waste if enough people can see and feel what I do, as a farmer, on a daily basis.
– Ben Moore
The Ugly Company currently produces three different products: Dried & Diced Peaches, Dried & Diced Apricots, and Dried & Diced Kiwis.
Spudsy is a fantastic brand that upcycles sweet potatoes into delicious Sweet Potato Puffs.
The Spudsy Puffs are available in 3 flavours; vegan cheesy cheddar, bangin’ bar-b-q, and cinnamon churro.
All the sweet potatoes they use are upcycled from a Non-GMO farm in the US.
Over 150 million lbs of sweet potatoes each year end up in land fills due to them being deemed not pretty enough for consumers.
Their Vegan Cheesy Cheddar puffs are deliciously amazing.
They are vegan, non-GMO, gluten-free, and free of the top 8 allergens.
Tia Lupita Foods
Tia Lupita Foods offers a whole lineup of delicious mexican goodies for you to snack on; Cactus Tortilla Chips, Cactus Torillas, and a bunch of hot sauces!
But what we are talking about now are the Tia Lupita Cactus Tortilla Chips which are grainless, gluten free, non-GMO and a great source of fiber.
They’re made of cactus, cassava flour, chia seeds, and coconut flour. Coming in 5 different flavors all of which are delicious and have their own flavor profile.
OneForNeptune makes a unique High Protein Fish Jerky and they pride themselves on using fresh, sustainable, natural ingredients.
Their fish jerky is gluten-free, free of preservatives, dairy-free and non-GMO. It is a low calorie snack that is high in protein, 10g of protein and only 60 calories per serving.
You may be turned off by the thought of fish jerky but it is surprising really good, with Firey Cajun being my personal favorite flavor by them.
Acari are another company that makes the “surprisingly good fish jerky” which they have called El Diablito, coming from the invasive species devil fish which they use to make their jerky.
El Diablito is gluten-free, keto-friendly, and packed with protein. What makes El Diablito jerky awesome is that it tastes and feels like beef, and comes with all the benefits of eating fish.
Their jerky is currently available in 2 flavors: original and fuego.
The Original flavor has a natural smokey taste. The Fuego builds on that smokiness with some added kick.
Candid makes these delicious Noons Cacao Bites which are super natural and healthy. They are made of only a select few organic ingredients.
Noon’s packaging also comes with a pouch that holds the cacao bites inside the box. Both the pouch and the packaging is fully compostable making for a fully sustainable product.
Noons are Cacao Bites that are made of only organic ingredients and no added sugar, coming with a fully recyclable and compostable packaging.
Pulp Pantry is on a mission to bring you the best organic vegetable-based chips you’ll ever have. They’re naturally grain-free, gluten-free, plant-based and non-GMO.
They’re also a great source of fiber packing a full days serving of fiber per bag of chips, made with fresh veggies and superfoods like chia seeds.
Pulp Pantry Veggie Chips are a great snack to pair with a movie or to snack on with your lunch. They’re just great!
Fancypants Baking Co.
Fancypants Baking Co strives to make delicious natural, non-GMO, nut free & allergy friendly cookies, and they take sustainability seriously.
Their cookies are made of clean label ingredients, baked with fresh ingredients, including organic eggs and butter. Nothing artificial is used, even the color is plant-based.
Fancypants Baking Co Cookies come in over a dozen flavors and even sell keto-friendly and vegan-friendly cookies as well!
PRO TIP: These go great with Oat Milk!
Kazoo makes sustainable corn chips which are absolutely delicious and worth trying. They are also low on carbs and a source of fiber, calcium and iron.
Kazoo Corn Chips are made of an upcycled nutrient rich corn germ which is typically throw away in traditional chip processing.
Kazoo chips are a great little snack that reduces waste, has the same taste, and has more nutrients compared to a traditional corn chip.
ADDITIONAL HEALTHY SNACK RESOURCES:
Prime Roots Plant-Based Fungi Foods Are Sizzling Success
LÜME Launches Glam Superfood Granola Pouches