In life, they say timing is everything. Certainly, the saying was true for two entrepreneurs and their cold-pressed juice business.
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In this Salute to American Success, we’re taking a look at WTRMLN WTR, a company that turns unwanted watermelons into bottled juice.
The company was founded in 2013, and its product debuted on Whole Foods Market’s (NASDAQ:WFM) shelves the same day music superstar Beyoncé’s Grammy Award-winning song “Drunk in Love” was released. The artist recently invested an undisclosed amount into WTRMLN WTR. Ironically, one of the last lines of the hit track features the lyrics, “I’ve been drinking, watermelon.”
“We sent her [Beyoncé] stuff and started talking about how she could invest in the company,” WTRMLN WTR Co-Founder and CEO Jody Levy said to FOXBusiness.com.
In a statement, the singer said: "I invested in WTRMLN WTR because it's the future of clean, natural hydration; as partners, we share a simple mission to deliver accessible wellness to the world. She continued, “This is more than an investment in a brand; it's an investment in female leaders, fitness, American farmers, and the health of people and our planet."
In the United States, watermelon has been grown for more than 300 years. Farmers in nearly all 50 states grow more than $500 million worth of the fruit commercially every year, according to the United States Department of Agriculture’s Agricultural Research Service.
“Millions of pounds of watermelon go unused in the U.S. per year,” Levy said. “We heard the horrible numbers and wanted to create a product to utilize a waste to create an opportunity and one that could help American growers.”
The company tries to work exclusively with American farmers, according to Levy, who said they use a cold pasteurization method known as “High Pressure Processing.” The technique is an alternate way to kill bacteria instead of using thermal pasteurization. Only two ingredients—watermelon (flesh and rind) and lemon—are used to create its signature juice product, which Levy said differs from coconut water.
“At the beginning [of the business] we entered into the coconut water consumer base,” she said. “We’re also being compared to other sports drinks. People drink it [WTRMLN WTR] every day and for workouts because it hydrates.”
Levy’s advice to entrepreneurs is short and sweet—believe in yourself.
“Always trust your instincts, no matter how many other opinions there are,” she said, adding, “focus on building a tribe, a team of experts that love the product and the company and the brand and the story around it.”