Juntos Crecemos (Together We Grow)
PepsiCo Selects 10 Hispanic-Owned Food and Beverage Startups to Join
the Greenhouse Accelerator Program: Juntos Crecemos Edition
Selected Hispanic-owned companies will participate in a six-month business mentoring program and receive a $20,000 grant to accelerate business growth and transform product offerings; One finalist to receive $100,000 at the end of the program to further advance their business
In this edition of Hispanic Business Update, a production of Hispanic Lifestyle, I had a great time talking with Esperanza Teasdale, Vice President & General Manager of Hispanic Business Unit, PepsiCo Beverages North America. During this segment we talked about the challenges of retail businesses surviving to thrive post pandemic shut down and PepsiCo’s Juntos Crecemos (Together We Grow) project.
PepsiCo, Inc. recently announced the 10 finalists chosen to participate in the Greenhouse Accelerator Program: Juntos Crecemos (Together We Grow) Edition. For the first time in its history, the program is focused on supporting emerging Hispanic businesses that provide products, services, and technology solutions across the food and beverage industry.
The finalists represent a diverse range of emerging businesses in the categories of consumer-packaged goods, beverages, market analytics and technology, sustainable packaging solutions, and environmental impact and waste reduction. The 10 Hispanic-owned businesses chosen to participate in this year’s cohort include:
- CHUZA Inc: (San Diego, CA) CHUZA is spicing up the snacking game with its range of spicy fruits and vegetable snacks using 100% Mexican spices made with no added colors or artificial flavors. The company was founded to share authentic Mexican culture, flavors, and flair with the world.
- Date Better Snacks: (Los Angeles, CA) Date Better Snacks was built as an alternative to the traditional candy bar. The Latina-owned company makes the product from scratch using Medjool dates and rainforest alliance certified 85% organic chocolate. The vegan and gluten-free snacks have less than one gram of added sugar per serving and no artificial ingredients.
- Dathic: (New York, NY) Dathic is an AI-powered platform that provides Hispanic market insights and analytics to CPG brands to help them grow their sales. The company provides actionable data to help companies understand market opportunities, optimize distribution, and create authentic cultural connections with multicultural consumers.
- FoodWare: (Bay Area, CA) FoodWare is powering the circular economy via a tech-enabled reusables tracking system & impact accounting platform. Their mission is to eliminate all single-use food packaging – one of the biggest causes of climate change and environmental pollution.
- Hyfé: (Chicago, IL) Hyfé is a Latina-founded company that repurposes food supply chain wastewater. The company uses nutrients washed away in trillions of gallons of food manufacturing wastewater to power the creation of carbon-negative essential goods like foods, materials and chemicals to improve the profitability and eco-friendliness of food and beverage manufacturers.
- I Eat My Greens: (San Diego, CA) I Eat My Greens provides chef-crafted, plant-based soups made with fresh, whole-food ingredients that make eating vegetables irresistible and accessible. The ready-to-eat soups help consumers meet their daily intake of nutrient-rich vegetables while practicing sustainable agricultural practices that reduce food waste.
- Katrina Brewing Co: (Miami, FL) Katrina Brewing Co is the first craft non-alcoholic beer that brings an authentic artisanal Mexican option to the emerging non-alcoholic beer sector. The light and crisp beer brand adopted the Katrina-inspired logo and the Aztec sun pattern used on the cans to connect consumers with their culture.
- Pisqueya: (Brooklyn, NY) Pisqueya [pees-keh-yah] is a first-generation, woman-owned, Latinx-American food company that offers a premium line of hot sauces and seasonings. The company was founded to celebrate Latin culture and tradition while filling the gap in Hispanic Caribbean representation in the global food market.
- Tia Lupita® Foods: (Los Angeles, CA) Tia Lupita® Foods is the first brand in the United States to introduce nopales (cactus) as an alternative functional and sustainable ingredient in its line of grain-free tortilla chips and tortillas. The Mexican-inspired foods are high in antioxidants, fiber, iron, calcium and potassium. The line of low glycemic products helps reduce water waste and food production carbon footprint.
- TRUE SPIRIT BEVERAGE COMPANY: (Tucson, AZ) Hispanic-founded PARCH™ is the world’s first line of non-alcoholic, vegan, gluten-free, all-natural agave cocktails infused with desert botanicals and adaptogens. The ready-to-drink line of beverages is a modern and credible alternative to traditional alcohol for the mindful adult drinker.
This edition of the Greenhouse Accelerator has partnered with PepsiCo Juntos Crecemos – a multifaceted platform part of PepsiCo’s Racial Equality Journey designed to provide short and long-term support to Hispanic small businesses over five years. These emerging Hispanic-owned small businesses were chosen through a deliberate selection process that evaluated their potential to bring forth innovative packaged goods and transformative solutions to improve consumer experience, sustainability and efficiency across the food and beverage industry.
The finalists were announced at a launch event in Plano, Texas, where they were joined by PepsiCo executives and experts from functions including research and development, supply chain and design. During the event, each entrepreneur presented an overview of their company and was paired with their PepsiCo mentorship team, who will support the business during the six-month accelerator program.
“We’re excited to continue helping to fuel the growth of these Hispanic small businesses, not only through financial support, but also by providing them access to top-of-the-line mentorship and business resources,” said Esperanza Teasdale, Vice President & General Manager of Hispanic Business Unit, PepsiCo Beverages North America. Through the Greenhouse Accelerator Program: Juntos Crecemos Edition, we’re committed to helping even more businesses grow faster and sustain their long-term performance.”
In addition to receiving the $20,000 grant and mentorship, the finalists will have an opportunity to secure even more funding later this year. In August, each will have a chance to showcase the progress made as a result of the support received from the Greenhouse Accelerator via a virtual event in front of an evaluation committee. In November, an expert selection committee will award the business with the highest potential an additional $100,000 to continue its expansion and opportunities to work with PepsiCo and Juntos Crecemos.
“We are inspired by each of the finalists selected for this year’s PepsiCo Greenhouse Accelerator cohort. Each company truly represents the Hispanic community’s strong entrepreneurial spirit and ingenuity,” said Antonio Escalona, Senior Vice President & General Manager of Hispanic Business Unit, PepsiCo Foods North America. “We look forward to seeing the progress made during each step of the six-month mentorship journey and setting each business up for long-term success.”
The Greenhouse Accelerator program launched in Europe in 2016 and expanded to North America in 2018. Over the years, the program has evolved to support innovators and entrepreneurs that appeal to consumer needs, including sustainability and nutrition solutions. This is the eighth Greenhouse Accelerator program, and the objective remains the same: to support entrepreneurs in their growth.
For more information on PepsiCo Greenhouse Accelerator: Juntos Crecemos Edition, please visit https://greenhouseaccelerator.com/juntos-crecemos/
PepsiCo products are enjoyed by consumers more than one billion times a day in more than 200 countries and territories around the world. PepsiCo generated more than $86 billion in net revenue in 2022, driven by a complimentary beverage and convenient foods portfolio that includes Lay’s, Doritos, Cheetos, Gatorade, Pepsi-Cola, Mountain Dew, Quaker, and SodaStream. PepsiCo’s product portfolio includes a wide range of enjoyable foods and beverages, including many iconic brands that generate more than $1 billion each in estimated annual retail sales.