By Mitchell Clute
Utterly organic and packed with seven nuts and seeds for optimum nutrition, each of NuttZo’s three nut butters is unusual and complex. Power Fuel, for example, contains a mixture of cashews, almonds, Brazil nuts, flaxseeds, hazelnuts, chia seeds and pumpkin seeds, yielding a blend that’s full of flavor and high in omega-3 fatty acids. The original and dark chocolate flavors mix nuts and seeds in a peanut base for optimum protein.
On all flavors, NuttZo’s labels are upside down, so they sit lid down on the shelf. This means that when the natural oils separate, they’re at the bottom of the jar instead of the top and don’t make a mess when they’re stirred back in. Brilliant! And on top of that, all products are certified gluten-free, non-GMO and kosher, with no added sugars or oils.
But unique as the products are, the story of how they came to be is even more amazing. Fifteen years ago, founder Danielle Dietz-LiVolsi was watching television when she stumbled upon a story about Romanian orphanages. The story struck her deeply—so deeply that, two years later, she traveled with her husband and thirteen-year-old daughter to the Ukraine to adopt Gregory, then almost four years old.
“He’d been in an orphanage his entire life, and he was super-duper little, in the fifth percentile in height and weight,” recalls Dietz-LiVolsi. “I had a battle on my hands.” She loved to cook, but Gregory didn’t love to eat anything with texture. Hoping to increase his intake of healthy fats and protein, she created a version of original NuttZo in her home food processor. Voilà! When she spread the blend on apples and bananas, Gregory wolfed it down
The aha moment came when her husband, tired of cleaning the food processor, asked, “Why don’t you just buy this instead?” The answer was simple—because nothing like NuttZo existed. Still, it wasn’t until they’d adopted another child that she went to work in earnest on her nut butter business, working with business coaches to keep her focused and finding suppliers with the quality she demanded.
From the very beginning, Dietz-LiVolsi knew that her business would be about giving back. But she wanted 100 percent of proceeds to go directly to supported projects, so she created her own nonprofit. When NuttZo officially launched in 2009, so did Project Left Behind (www.projectleftbehind.org). Amazingly, every dollar from NuttZo and private donors goes directly to fund orphanages, with no money deducted for overhead costs.
“We sought out small, boutique children’s homes where the kids had a real chance of making it because of the intimate setting, family bond and emphasis on education, which is the only way they can really break the cycle and get a job that allows them to move up the ladder,” Dietz-LiVolsi says. Project Left Behind currently supports four projects—two in Peru, and one each in India and Nepal.
So, the next time you’re looking for amazing flavor and organic ingredients in a nut butter, think NuttZo. You’ll get a better product—and a better world.
To learn more, visit www.nuttzo.com