You know that making a morning blend can be pretty messy if you’re a smoothie lover who likes to experiment. It was hard for Kathryn Bernell to balance her busy workload with trying to eat while she was in grad school. She says, “I used to make smoothies every morning, but every time I made anything with whole fruits and veggies, my kitchen turned into a full-blown war zone.” My favorite blends eventually got old due to all the prep work and cleaning.
She thought of stuffing the fruits and vegetables she used in smoothies into ice pop molds so she could make the whole smoothie-making process easier. The ‘good stuff’ was packed into pops that were easy to grab from the freezer and pop out of the door,” she says. Her friends began to ask her for smoothie pops after noticing her healthy (and tasty-looking) habit. Thankfully, her brand reBLEND makes them available to the masses today.
Using fruits and veggie scraps that would otherwise go to waste, ReBLEND creates smoothie pops with smoothies. As a child, you probably ate colorful Otter Pops as a snack that were less nutrient-dense, but still tasty.
Bernell found out how much food was being wasted as soon as she started sourcing produce for her pops from farmers and manufacturers. There are few products in the market that are really made with whole fruits and vegetables as their starting point,” she says. We have access to unnecessarily discarded products all around us, but not many manufacturers can utilize them as part of their supply chain.”
The company began purchasing “imperfect produce” and other perishable byproducts from farmers and manufacturers in order to give new life to this waste. According to her, one of the companies that sourced the stems was involved in making cauliflower rice. The brilliant upcycling movement is taking over the food industry in a major way–an important step towards sustainability.
The most challenging part of making smoothies for Bernell wasn’t actually sourcing the ingredients, but determining the sweetness level of different flavors. I have deliberately designed the smoothie pops to include sweeter flavors, such as our Raspberry Lemonade ($ 15), Very Berry ($ 15), and other refreshing flavors, such as Frosé All Day ($ 15). These are intended to please a variety of palates, she explains.
As well as perfecting the texture and taste of the cake, Bernell wanted to avoid using any ingredients consumers would have to look up online. For instance, we do not add ascorbic acid [a typical color enhancer]. My goal is to consume foods that come from fruits, vegetables, and superfoods, and I choose ingredients that fall into these categories.”
Smoothie pops that are nutritious, sustainably sourced, and refreshing check all the nutrition boxes. Besides, there’s something about enjoying a smoothie in ice pop form that’s just more fun.
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