By Jessica Hamlin
If you can imagine Disneyland for the health industry, the Natural Products Expo is it.
Every year, thousands of companies showcase healthy or eco-conscious food, body, home and business items at Natural Products Expo West—in the same city as Disneyland, funny enough. Some have already stood out among the crowd at this year’s NEXTY Awards, given for innovation, integrity, and inspiration. From alternative jerky to a drink that makes a trendy wellness food even better, here are our picks for some of the best new healthy products. Watch for them to hit stores in the next few months.
Already making organic sauerkraut in flavors we enjoy now, Farmhouse Culture continues to ferment the world of food. Their newest creations include fermented vegetables like curry cauliflower, ginger beets and spicy taqueria mixed veggies. They’re also debuting Gut Punch, a sparkling drink in flavors like orange cream and cherry cacao that feature fermented vegetable liquid—that juice in your kraut is beneficial too! You can also load up on probiotics while eating chips, thanks to their new Kraut Krisps in flavors like smoked jalapeno and dill pickle with sauerkraut as the first ingredient. (Available in stores nationwide.)
Add veggies to a big wellness trend and you get Bonafide’s Drinkable Veggies + Bone Broth. Bonafide’s quality organic bone broth is made to let its benefits shine while organic pureed vegetables in this drink add extra nutrients, fiber and a zesty taste. Think of it as a protein-packed creamy gazpacho soup you can sip on the go. Just keep hydrated since this concoction can be salty. (Available in stores nationwide or online.)
Coconut has been used to make so many innovative food products in recent years, it was only a matter of time before coconut jerky got its due. Cocoburg (pictured above) lays claim to the first and only raw, vegan, paleo, gluten-free and soy-free “superfood” jerky made from coconut. Its texture and subtle savory flavor can even turn skeptics into supporters. Try original, chili lime or ginger teriyaki. (Available online or in several stores.)
What makes a decadent treat even better? Clean ingredients. Combining layers of smooth almond butter and luscious dark chocolate ganache in an almond cookie crust, Hail Merry’s chocolate almond butter cups are like mini tarts. For an extra buzz, try the dark chocolate espresso variety. These maple syrup-sweetened goodies come in packs of two so you can share one…if you can bear to part with it. (Available in stores nationwide.)
Step away from the fish sticks. Kids can now enjoy a healthy seafood snack made especially for them thanks to Salmon Bites for Kids. Made from wild caught Alaskan salmon, broccoli, and sweet potato, these unbreaded bites are also free of gluten, dairy, GMOs, added sugars and artificial colors and flavors. Plus, they’re sustainable like all of Salty Girl’s seafood. (Check Salty Girl for availability.)
Started by moms who wanted healthy, environmentally-friendly options for their kids—not the literally millions of plastic sandwich bags thrown out each day—these reusable toxin-free bags are made of lightweight fabric. They can fit a good-size sandwich and are safe to clean in the dishwasher. (Available online.)
Chameleon’s organic, free trade bottled cold brew is a favorite among coffee drinkers. But its single origin coffee beans from Mexico’s Chiapas region are also garnering praise for transparent sourcing and helping a community in need. The beans help support farmers in Chiapas dealing with the aftermath of Roya, a plant disease that damages coffee leaves. Here’s to showing a cup of joe can make a difference beyond your morning routine. (Check Chameleon for availability.)
As much as we enjoy snacking on tasty sheets of roasted dried seaweed, it can get messy. One of the most popular seaweed snack brands takes it up a notch with Chomperz, crunchy non-GMO seaweed chips made with just a few other ingredients like rice flour. Enjoy these light, bite-sized snacks in original, barbecue, jalapeño and onion flavors. (Available online or in stores nationwide.)
Also published on Medium.