Four food and beverage startups announced as finalists vying for a $200,000 angel investment via Oregon Angel Food to be announced at the virtual Grand Finale on September 17th, 2021.
Portland, OR: Oregon Entrepreneurs Network today announced the finalists in the Oregon Angel Food investment program. Each finalist will pitch their company and take questions from investors at the OregonAF Grand Finale & Marketplace on September 17, 2021. Finalists hail from across Oregon and SW Washington:
Young Mountain Tea (Springfield, OR): As founder Raj Vable, a Fulbright Scholar who connected with Himalayan tea farmers while working in the region describes it, his tea company started with a promise to farmers. He would help them develop financially viable operations that would give their rural children hope for making a living locally and maintaining their community-based production practices, by creating a company that would bring their high-quality teas to American consumers. Eight years later he has developed an avid following for the farmers’ loose leaf teas and is ready for expansion.
Face Rock Creamery (Bandon, OR): Face Rock Creamery is an award winning specialty cheese producer based in Bandon that sources its milk from the greater Southern Oregon region. The company is already a home-grown success story and sells cheese nationally via Costco, Kroger, Safeway, and Whole Foods. Founder Gregory Drobot is seeking investment to expand to further grow sales and expand their facilities in Bandon, bringing more jobs to the region.
Sweet Apricity (Vancouver, WA): Founder Tonya Butts explains that the word apricity (pronounced ah-priss’-i-tee) is derived from the Latin aprīcitās, meaning the warmth of the sun in winter. Her products, including sea salt caramels, vanilla marshmallows, and caramel sauce, are produced with ingredients like grass-fed beef gelatin and organic maple sugar that are specifically designed to meet auto-immune protocol (AIP) and paleo diets.
Puffworks (Portland, OR): Puffworks lands at the intersection of two powerful trends: plant-based snacking and food allergy prevention, according to founder and CEO, Greg Murphy. Puffworks Organic Peanut Butter Puffs make it easy for parents to introduce peanut to infants (6+ months of age), as they dissolve easily and contain low sodium. Their crunchier Puffs, available in four flavors, like Strawberry PB&J, are a delicious option for older kids and adults and offer 4-5 grams of plant-based protein per serving.
The online finale will be held from 1-3:30pm on September 17th via an immersive experience on the Brandlive platform, with a live afterparty to follow at Freeland Spirits in NW Portland from 4-6pm. Taster’s Tickets, which include a treat-filled gift box of food and beverage samples to taste while watching the entrepreneurs pitch their products on the main stage, go on sale August 13th at www.oen.org.
In addition to pitches from the investment finalists, the show will feature a showcase of early-stage OregonAF Makers working on innovative new food and beverage products. An e-commerce marketplace built into the show platform will allow viewers to purchase directly from select Makers. We Are OregonAF merchandise featuring “Loafy”, the OregonAF mascot, is available at www.weareoregonaf.com. All proceeds from the sale of merchandise benefit the nonprofit Oregon Entrepreneurs Network.
Amanda Oborne, OEN Executive Director, is thrilled with the statewide reach of this year’s Oregon Angel Food participants. “The normalization of online education and investor pitches brought on by the pandemic has resulted in this year’s OregonAF Makers joining from Bandon, Hood River, Bend, Salem, Eugene/Springfield and beyond. Peer-to-peer connections among Makers are made much richer by virtue of this geographic diversity, and we’re excited to help eaters and investors meet new brands from across the region.”
Oregon Entrepreneurs Network (OEN) is a 501(c)3 nonprofit organization dedicated to helping entrepreneurs start-up and scale up. The organization hosts two main entrepreneur education and angel investment programs: Angel Oregon Tech (AOTech) and Oregon Angel Food (OregonAF). Learn more at www.oen.org.