Pure Batch is a mother-daughter operation out of Hillsborough, NJ that creates delectable desserts that are vegan, gluten-free, soy-free, and made with natural, whole foods. Their journey began in 2015 when CEO and Co-Founder Angela Millin, fondly known as Mama Millin, won her fight against Breast Cancer.
After Mama Millin beat breast cancer, she knew that she needed to change how she was eating and treating her body - keeping herself healthy was a top priority, but also needed to be an enjoyable experience... and Mama has quite the sweet tooth.
"You don't have a business, you have a brownie!"
It all started with a brownie. A black bean brownie, specifically. After many attempts at finding a recipe for a healthy dessert that actually tasted like a dessert, Mama Millin decided to go against the grain and create her own recipe. After many trials and tweaks, she had a winner of a recipe - the All Day Brownie. Nutritious, dense and delicious, soon Mama wasn't just making these for herself, but for family and friends as well. It was at that moment that Mama Millin thought, "wow... we really might have something here," and decided to approach her daughter and co-founder Angela about starting a business.
In true mother-daughter form, Angela's response to Mama's proposal was, "You crazy lady, you don't have a business, you have a brownie!"
Onward and Upward!
Angela came around to Mama's proposal. Her only requests - the company they started needed to be a lifestyle brand that would be doing something different, to really change the market... and they needed to have more products. True to her form, Mama went back to the drawing board and came up with 26 different products.
The next few years were a rollercoaster. From selling their products at the farmer's market, where they showed up with their treats in some basic packaging and made over $20,000 in sales, to the struggles of hunting for a commercial kitchen and obtaining certifications, to the branding and planning that comes with a retail launch.
In 2018, Pure Batch did a test retail launch at Expo East and had their products in some local stores in the tri-state and mid-Atlantic area. They worked hard to test consumer feedback and reimagine their product before relaunching at Expo East 2019. The new and improved Pure Batch products were now centered around being single-serve, grab and go, and fit the niche of "smart snacking" that continues to grow.
Supply and... Supply
With a successful relaunch and tremendously good feedback on the evolution of their product and branding, Mama and Angela Millin set out to grow their business and store presence. One of the biggest challenges they continued to face was finding suppliers who not only had what they needed, but also aligned with their company's values. Trying to revolutionize dessert options into healthy snacks grew increasingly more difficult, as reliance on suppliers and consistency of product quality was necessary - one simple change in the ingredients used resulted in an entirely different outcome for their snacks!
Luckily, Mama Millin would not give up on finding the right supplier for organic cashews. Mama knew of Olam, but thought they were "THE company... like they're all over the world, how am I going to reach anyone at Olam?? Here I was, ordering at the time maybe 25 pounds every 6 weeks... even finding a distributor that wanted to supply that was challenging. Who at Olam would talk to me?"
As their business continued to grow and their need for a quality supply of organic cashews grew as well, Pure Batch ran into an issue with different kinds of cashews from their distributor. After testing out cashews from different origins for their products, they found that cashews from India suited their needs best... but they were becoming more and more difficult to source.
Pure Batch + Olam Edible Nuts
After tons of searching, one lucky day Mama Millin stumbled upon OlamEdibleNuts.com. Stunned that she found a way to connect with Olam, she reached out and got in touch with our Customer Service Representative, Michelle.
Mama was beyond thrilled to connect with someone who understood what she and Pure Batch was going through - she was able to talk to someone who was able to help her find a solution as to why different types of cashews weren't working for their products, and what she could do to fix it. After plenty of calls back and forth, and with Mama being impressed with Michelle's response time and initiative ("She was just fabulous! So quick to respond, I even forgot you guys were on California time!"), Pure Batch was able to settle on a product that works for them.
"Michelle gave me some options of cashews, and it was online, and it was so easy! She explained that it was a new process for Olam, and I just fell in love. It was right here in my backyard this whole time, with your warehouse in New Jersey."
Moving forward, Mama Millin has big plans for their company but will remain true to her roots. "Remember, I'm starting this business at 50-something years old - you've gone above and beyond for us, and we are loyal to those who help us along the way."
Pure Batch makes delicious and nutritious snacks that are certified organic, vegan, gluten-free, soy-free, peanut-free, and their business is WBENC certified. To learn more or buy their products, check out their website at PureBatch.com