A Thoughtful Approach

NatureBox is a company founded in 2011 by co-founder and CEO Gautam Gupta. Their aim is to decrease obesity by changing eating habits and encouraging healthy snacking. Customers who join NatureBox receive 5 snacks each month for $20 through an ongoing monthly subscription that can be cancelled or paused at anytime with a simple (and pleasant) phone call. They also have family plans of 10 or 20 snacks each month for $30 and $50, respectively. When it comes to choosing snacks, NatureBox has made it easy by rolling out an interactive beta version that allows you to fine-tune your snacking choices each month by picking specific snacks for your monthly delivery. I discovered the Beta version after calling to inquire on how to receive only vegan snacks, which they are beginning to introduce in greater quantity into their product line.

NatureBox is like any business--existing to create a profit, but the co-founder and CEO seem to be passionate about their mission. In addition to their message of healthy eating/snacking, NatureBox is partnered with WhyHunger, a non-profit who aims towards eliminating world hunger by working "directly with community organizations, emergency food providers and summer meal programs for low-income children (cite)." These are all wonderful undertakings, but I had questions for NatureBox with concern for the consumer in mind. Some ideas can sound too good to be true. I wanted to know what constituted something as a healthy snack?

When I think about healthy foods, I think about whole foods that are organic in addition to being preservative, dye, corn syrup, and GMO-free. Not only that, but I always have concerns about a company's impact on the environment. The company claims to use local growers and independent food producers for their snacks. Their snacks also come in recyclable packaging, which is huge in my book since I aim to eliminate my product wast by 98% (and have been successful at doing so thanks to conscious consumerism, composting and TerraCycle). I still have additional concerns, like the energy cost of production and distribution of their products since they are distributed via mail. I recently emailed NatureBox about the big GMO question and how they distribute their profits towards charities like WhyHunger and their affiliates. Their response was so delightful that I found it important to share (see below):

AUG 15, 2013 | 12:39PM PDT
Original message
Kimberly wrote:

Hi,

I am wondering roughly what percentage of your products are made using any GMO ingredients? Also, what percentage of your annual profit is donated to charities like WhyHunger and their affiliated partners? Thanks so much.

Sincerely,

Kimberly W


RE:

AUG 15, 2013 | 01:45PM PDT
Lorig @ NatureBox replied:
Hi Kimberly,

Thank you so much for your interest in NatureBox!

We are working to continually introduce more and more snacks made from non-GMO ingredients into our monthly discovery NatureBox. We work with a variety of suppliers, and while some of them have products that are made from non-GMO ingredients, there are some that are unable to verify the presence and absence of GMO ingredients. Due to this, we are unable to confirm that all of our snacks are non-GMO.

Great news though, We have recently confirmed 18 Non-GMO snacks! They now live in their own category in our catalog of items to choose from! If you are interested in selecting your snacks please let us know and we would be more than happy to set that up for you!

We’re obviously most interested in partnering with verified non-GMO manufacturers and suppliers, and are working to build those relationships, but not all of our current suppliers label their products. When identified as made from non-GMO ingredients, we do note this on the packaging as well.

In regards to our donations to WhyHunger, we make quarterly donations as well as directly providing our healthy snacks to WhyHunger partners, including community-based organizations, emergency food providers and summer meal programs for low-income children.

Please let us know if there is anything else we can do for you. Have a wonderful day!

In good health,
Lorig@NatureBox

Thanks, NatureBox for being so responsible.

Holding your providers accountable for your health and safety is paramount. I encourage everyone to regularly contact their representatives (commercial, political, social, etc.) to openly address any concerns towards the way an agency does business. I will be introducing a new project here in regards to this topic under the 'accountability' tag/label located on the Blogs Tag tab to the right of this page.

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