Guac Shop, founded by Danielle Arbinger, makes four delicious and unique styles of guacamole. Danielle had been making her special guacamole for friends and family for years, and always dreamed of taking it to the next level. But when she entered her product into the Franklin Park Kiosk Competition and won first prize (valued at $20,000 dollars) she knew Guac Shop was ready to take the next step.
But to scale up, Guac Shop had to solve two difficult and expensive problems. The first problem was how to ramp up production. To do so would require significant investment and expense. And the second issue was how to increase the shelf life of the product to make it viable for selling in retail outlets.
And this is where CIFT and our NOCK facility was able to step in and help the Guac Shop solve these issues and help propel their business forward.
“I am so thankful to CIFT. With their help, I was able to start Guac Shop and scale up at warp speed. The facilities, equipment, guidance and connections I’ve made there have been invaluable to my business.” – Danielle Arbinger, President and Founder of The Guac Shop
CIFT was able to move them into our production facility in Bowling Green, Ohio. Because CIFT is both an incubator and a nonprofit, Guac Shop was able to do so without having to invest in costly equipment or a more expensive rental of a industrial production facility. Utilizing our facility and equipment, along with guidance from our expert team, allowed them to quickly ramp up production.
But Guac Shop still had the problem of increasing the shelf life of their delicious product. The guacamole at that point has a shelf life of only seven days, which would not be enough to get the product stocked at retail outlets and grocery stores. By working with our team and our network connections at OSU, Guac Shop was able to switch to a HPP process for refrigerated products. This increased their shelf life from seven to over sixty days.
With these problems solved through partnering with our team at CIFT, Guac Shop is now taking it to the next level and selling their product at outlets like Walt Churchills Markets and Kazmaiers Market among others. Working with CIFT also saved them $240,000 in investment costs, and an increase in sales of $10,000. Guac Shop was also able to create and retain 5 jobs, and due to growth make an additional $21,000 in new investments. Working together with our team, Danielle and Guac Shop had truly taken it to the next level.
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