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Runa’s Tyler Gage on Becoming Fully Alive

Runa's Tyler Gage on Becoming Fully Alive

I first learned about guayusa tea and met fellow Brown University alum and Runa co-founder Tyler Gage at NYC’s Fancy Food Show 2010.  Over the years, I  have watched the company grow from a scrappy start-up into a multi-million dollar innovator in the tea category, responsible for introducing guayusa to the global market. Yet, it […]

Book Reviews Reviews
LivingMaxwell.com


I first learned about guayusa tea and met fellow Brown University alum and Runa co-founder Tyler Gage at NYC’s Fancy Food Show 2010. 

Over the years, I  have watched the company grow from a scrappy start-up into a multi-million dollar innovator in the tea category, responsible for introducing guayusa to the global market. Yet, it wasn’t until I read Tyler Gage’s excellent book Fully Alive: Using the Lessons of the Amazon to Live Your Mission in Business and Life did I come to appreciate what an awe-inspiring feat that he and his co-founder Dan MaCombie accomplished.

To build a guayusa supply chain from scratch in the middle of the jungle in Ecuador, where you know no one, have very little resources and are not a native speaker, is one of the most impressive things I have seen in my eight years of covering the organic food industry. Creating and growing a successful organic business is hard enough but to do it under these conditions takes the meaning of ‘difficult’ to a whole new level.

I recently caught up with Tyler Gage to talk to him about Fully Alive and asked him to share his insight about being an organic food entrepreneur. Read more »


Organic Insider: Leading Industry Companies are Fighting Against Hydroponics in Organic

Organic Insider: Leading Industry Companies are Fighting Against Hydroponics in Organic

On Wednesday, I wrote about the very controversial issue of hydroponics in organic and how allowing it to be certified as organic is a complete violation of the Organic Foods Production Act of 1990. This issue is so problematic that some of the organic industry’s leading companies have jumped into the debate and asked the […]

Organic Insider
LivingMaxwell.com

On Wednesday, I wrote about the very controversial issue of hydroponics in organic and how allowing it to be certified as organic is a complete violation of the Organic Foods Production Act of 1990.

This issue is so problematic that some of the organic industry’s leading companies have jumped into the debate and asked the National Organic Standards Board (NOSB), which is meeting at the end of this month, to recommend that hydroponics be removed from organic immediately. Read more »


Organic Insider: My Conversation with the NYT’s Stephanie Strom, the Most Influential Food Business Journalist in the Country

Organic Insider: My Conversation with the NYT's Stephanie Strom, the Most Influential Food Business Journalist

After 30 years at The New York Times, Stephanie Strom recently resigned from the newspaper, having garnered the reputation as the most influential food business journalist in the country. In this week’s Organic Insider, I interviewed Stephanie Strom and we discussed a variety of subjects, including: – What food companies should NOT do when pitching to […]

Organic Insider
LivingMaxwell.com

After 30 years at The New York Times, Stephanie Strom recently resigned from the newspaper, having garnered the reputation as the most influential food business journalist in the country.

In this week’s Organic Insider, I interviewed Stephanie Strom and we discussed a variety of subjects, including:

– What food companies should NOT do when pitching to The New York Times

– Whether she dealt with editorial pressure to cover GMOs or organic in a certain way

– How the NYT’s view of GMOs and pesticides changed over the years

– The biggest challenges that the organic industry is facing right now

– How the organic industry can improve, from a PR perspective

To read my full interview with Stephanie Strom, just sign up for a free trial of Organic Insider (no credit card required), and I will send it right over to you.

Wishing you a great day!
Max


Common Ground Country Fair in Maine is an Incredibly Special Event

Common Ground Country Fair in Maine is an Incredibly Special Event

For quite a while, I had been hearing all about the Common Ground Country Fair in Unity, Maine and decided to finally make the trip up north last week to see what the enthusiasm was all about. Needless to say, the event exceeded all of my expectations, and it proved to be a truly special weekend. Not only is it rare […]

Events Organic Festivals
LivingMaxwell.com

For quite a while, I had been hearing all about the Common Ground Country Fair in Unity, Maine and decided to finally make the trip up north last week to see what the enthusiasm was all about.

Needless to say, the event exceeded all of my expectations, and it proved to be a truly special weekend. Not only is it rare that you can go to an event of this size and be able to eat organic food all day (there are no organic meal options at Expo West or Expo East), but you are surrounded by thousands of people who are also deeply committed to this way of life. Read more »


Top 5 Organic Food Products at Natural Products Expo East 2017

Top 5 Organic Food Products at Natural Products Expo East 2017

I just got back from a fantastic few days in Baltimore attending Natural Products Expo East, the organic industry’s second largest trade show of the year. In all of my years attending Expo East, this might have been the best one yet. There was an abundance of excellent innovation, and many interesting up-and-coming brands exhibited […]

Expo East Trade Shows
LivingMaxwell.com

I just got back from a fantastic few days in Baltimore attending Natural Products Expo East, the organic industry’s second largest trade show of the year.

In all of my years attending Expo East, this might have been the best one yet.

There was an abundance of excellent innovation, and many interesting up-and-coming brands exhibited for the first time. Furthermore, both the crowds and the pace of the show were not overwhelming, as is often the case at Natural Products Expo West. Read more »


I Love Suja’s New Fermented Botanicals — for Both the Taste and Health Benefits

I Love Suja's New Fermented Botanicals -- for Both the Taste and Health Benefits

As the leading pressed organic juice company in the country, Suja has rolled out many great tasting products over the years. While I will always be a huge fan of Suja’s Twelve Essentials and Lemon Love, its recently introduced fermented botanicals have become my new favorites. Earlier this year at Natural Products Expo West, I got a sneak […]

Product Reviews Reviews
LivingMaxwell.com

As the leading pressed organic juice company in the country, Suja has rolled out many great tasting products over the years.

While I will always be a huge fan of Suja’s Twelve Essentials and Lemon Love, its recently introduced fermented botanicals have become my new favorites.

Earlier this year at Natural Products Expo West, I got a sneak peek of these drinks, having no idea that new juices were in development. Within minutes of trying them, I walked over to Co-Founder and CEO Jeff Church and told him “These are your best drinks ever.” I was that impressed. Read more »


Organic Insider: The Serious Consequences of Lower Prices at Whole Foods

Organic Insider: The Serious Consequences of Lower Prices at Whole Foods

With Amazon’s acquisition of Whole Foods now complete, one of the very first things that it did was to lower prices, in some cases up to 43%. While consumers may be thrilled that some food items are less expensive, there are very serious consequences of this move, and it will have repercussions for all participants […]

Organic Insider
LivingMaxwell.com

With Amazon’s acquisition of Whole Foods now complete, one of the very first things that it did was to lower prices, in some cases up to 43%.

While consumers may be thrilled that some food items are less expensive, there are very serious consequences of this move, and it will have repercussions for all participants in the organic food sector.

To read my full analysis of what these price decreases will mean, just sign up for a free trial of Organic Insider (no credit card required), and I will send it right over to you.

Wishing you a great day!
Max