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The Glass Bottles are BACK at Organic Avenue

organic-avenue-upper-west-side-1

Earlier this year, I interviewed Jonathan Grayer, CEO of Weld North, the private equity firm that recently took control of Organic Avenue.

One of the things that we discussed was whether the company would be switching to HPP (high pressure processing) for its juices. His answer was “yes”. This made sense, especially if Organic Avenue wants to grow quickly on a national level or sell at third-party retail outlets, because HPP dramatically increases the shelf life to several weeks and allows you to ship across the country without the concern of spoilage.

From a business perspective, I totally understand why a company would go down the HPP route. Yet when opting for HPP, the process requires that the juice be in plastic bottles. And since Organic Avenue has been using glass for many of its drinks since inception, this would mean a very big change for the company. And its customers.

As someone who has been buying juice at Organic Avenue for many years, I have developed an emotional attachment to the company’s glass bottles and largely identify with this brand because of the glass. And my guess is that I am hardly alone with this thinking.

So, about a month ago, all of the juices that came in glass bottles completely disappeared. The rumor was that with a new CEO in place, Martin Bates, the company had finally decided to go all plastic in preparation for its move to HPP, which would allow it to sell in non-Organic Avenue retail outlets.

With most of us believing that the glass was gone forever, a few of the glass bottles mysteriously returned to Organic Avenue the other day for three of its flavors – Mellow Love (cucumber, spinach, celery, romaine, parsley), Sweet Greens (pear, cucumber, Swiss chard, orange, kale, collard greens, lemon, mint), and Royal Red (carrot, pear, pineapple, beet, orange, ginger, lemon).

Needless to say, I was thrilled. (These are the things in life that get me excited. What can I say?)

Will the glass bottles eventually be phased it? I hope not but truly have no idea.

The only thing that I do know for sure is that the glass is back at Organic Avenue, and for that I am grateful.

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