Making It: Peaceful Fruits Creates Snacks with Purpose
MAKER: Evan Delahanty
BUSINESS: Peaceful Fruits
RAINFOREST ROOTS: Peaceful Fruits got its start in 2014 when founder Evan Delahanty returned from serving two years as a Peace Corps volunteer in Suriname, a small country in the Amazon rainforest. He wanted to start a company that would continue to help the indigenous people he met there. Inspired by the people’s connection with their land, and by the plentiful fruits that grow in the rainforest, Delahanty began experimenting with making fruit snacks. “The reason we started with fruit snacks is because it was a way to use this natural fruit, and to tell a story about it,” Delahanty explained. “We really wanted to build a product to help connect people to the Amazon. So we bring that fruit in and help create a living wage for the folks down there.”
NO MORE FAKE FRUIT: Delahanty pointed out that when looking at the ingredients of a typical fruit snack found in a grocery store, there’s really not much actual fruit in them at all. Loads of sugar tends to be the main ingredient, mixed with additional syrups, flavoring, and coloring. “Fruit snacks need to be made out of fruit, and that’s what people deserve,” Delahanty stated.
PERFECT PARTNERS: In addition to his company helping to sustain the rainforest community, Peaceful Fruits also lends a hand to its home in Northeast Ohio by employing adults with developmental disabilities and helping them to earn a living wage. In partnering with the Blick Center of Akron, an organization that serves individuals with developmental, behavioral, and physical disabilities, Peaceful Fruits now employs more than 30 people with disabilities who are involved in every stage of the production process.