JERKY TRAIL MIX GETS A BIG THUMBS UP

When I find a healthy product that I like, that is tasty, full of good things and super convenient, I pass it on to you, my readers.  This is one of those such products.

Jeff Eckert is the founder of the company Dick Stevens and he makes beef and turkey jerky mixes.  I recently stumbled upon this company, and at first wasn’t sure if I was going to like jerky (and I love jerky) mixed with fruits and nuts. But I do and it makes a great trail mix of energy and awesomeness, especially when I am on the go. I just grab a bag, throw it in my purse, and have peace of mind that I have a healthy, gluten free snack with me at all times.

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1. How did Jeff get started with healthy jerky treats and what was he doing before?
Founder Jeff Eckert grew up in the food business. He worked for his dad, a food broker, doing mostly commodities for many years before leaving to work on his own doing commodity trading and some co-manufacturing. He was happy that his family was able to live comfortably, but grew bored with the mundaneness and bothered that he was not building anything with long-term equity. At one point, he ventured into “Corporate America,” working for a large food broker (that ironically has Dick Stevens as a client now), representing a jerky manufacturer in the convenience stores. At that point, Jeff had never tried jerky before. On his first day he tentatively opened the free bag at his desk. The first thing he noticed: the unbearable smell. He pulled a piece out, looked at it, pulled some apart and read the label. He was just in awe that people actually ate that kind of snack. So turned off, he quickly closed the bag and never tasted a piece. He quickly grew tired of corporate life and returned to the commodities business just 10 months later, but this time with a different goal in mind: his own line of jerky.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

2. I love his mantra, “more flavor, less ingredients”, what drove Jeff to go the extra mile to make such a clean product, instead of cutting so many ingredient corners like others in the jerky business and saving money?
Before founding Dick Stevens, Jeff ventured into “Corporate America,” working for a large food broker (that ironically has Dick Stevens as a client now), representing a jerky manufacturer in the convenience stores. At that point, Jeff had never tried jerky. On his first day he tentatively opened the free bag at his desk. The first thing he noticed: the unbearable smell. He pulled a piece out, looked at it, pulled some apart and read the label. He was just in awe that people actually ate that kind of snack. So turned off, he quickly closed the bag and never tasted a piece. That was his first impetus for a clean jerky. As he moved into the product development stage for Dick Stevens, he began thinking about combining jerky and trail mix.

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Trail mix has taken a terrible turn to the dark side in the last 10 years. What started out as a healthy snack of raw nuts, berries and seeds has turned into a salty, candy-laden, raisin and peanut blend that is, for the most part, unhealthy. Of course he had already noted how unhealthy traditional jerky is: high in sodium, nitrites, nitrates, etc. — all the things that damage your heart and cause cancer. So Jeff and his wife said, “Let’s make jerky healthy, make trail mix healthy again and make something great by putting them together.”

 

3. All of your jerky treats are gluten free, did Jeff make that choice or did the higher quality ingredients he chose to use do that for him?
Both really. With an active, health-conscious consumer in mind, Jeff made sure to pick amazing, all-natural, wholesome ingredients. He also wanted to make sure it appealed to sub-sets of this health-conscious target audience, so he ensured it was gluten-free and paleo-friendly.

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4. Does Jeff have a personal favorite?
The Original Beef jerky trail mix because it’s simple. Meat. Nuts. Fruits. One syllable. Simple. He likes simple.

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If you would like to find out more about Dick Stevens Jerky Mixes, Check out the links below:

WEBSITE

FACEBOOK

TWITTER

INSTAGRAM

 

 

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4 Comments - Write a Comment

  1. Hi there! Someone in my Facebook group shared this site with us so I came to check
    it out. I’m definitely loving the information. I’m book-marking and will be tweeting this to my
    followers! Exceptional blog and great design and style. http://www.yahoo.net

    Reply
  2. Thanks for the info. I’m a fan of jerky but always leery of trying because of all the additives and the over-processed taste it usually has. I could throw this into my gym bag and it’s perfect after I’m done working out.

    Reply
  3. I tried this jerky when I saw it on your Facebook page. I love it and so do my kids, great midday snack.

    Reply
  4. Is the fruit, especially the cranberries, organic? Is the beef grass-fed and sugar-free?

    Reply

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