The Shed partners with leading beef producer
by Lisa Monti
Published: March 28,2014
The Shed BBQ & Blues Joint’s Sauce company, The Saucery, has joined forces with Meyer Natural Angus Beef to develop a line of all natural food products to sell in retail grocery stores around the nation and potentially worldwide.
The partnership, only a few weeks old, brings together The Shed’s “junk” free barbeque sauces and marinades and Meyer’s “humanely raised antibiotic and hormone free beef products.” The Shed menu in Ocean Springs features Meyer’s beef brisket and other beef items will follow, said Linda Orrison, the Shed’s marketing director.
“It is an obvious transition for us to partner with Meyer Natural Angus to promote and serve a perfectly all-natural product from meat to sauce,” she said. “We are excited and proud of this new journey into healthier eating.”
Orrison’s children Brett, Brad and Brooke Orrison Lewis founded the restaurant in 2001. Orrison said the family’s focus for the past year and a half has been The Shed’s four sauces and three marinades.
“We reformulated all of our sauces and marinades to be ‘junk’ free,” By junk, she means gluten free, no GMOs, high fructose corn syrup, MSG, trans fats or artificial colorings. The market evidently was ready for their products.
“We hit the road to get the sauces on grocery store shelves a year ago and as of April will be in approximately 4,500 stores nationwide,” she said. The regional chains include Winn-Dixie, Sprouts, Whole Foods, Shop Rite, Jewel, Rouses and Albertsons. Orrison said the products will soon go national in all Publix Supermarkets.
The sauce served and sold at the restaurant is made by the Orrison’s locally. The sauce for grocery store shelves is made by Newly Weds Foods in Horn Lake, Miss. The Shed’s Hoggin’ It All marinade took top honors in the oil and vinegar category at the National Barbecue Association’s annual competition.
The partnership with Meyer Natural Angus was on a fast track, forming in a matter of weeks in February after The Shed’s all natural sauces caught the Kentucky-based company’s eye. “They researched us and came down. That day we knew we had something going on,” Orrison said.
Ad campaigns will promote the Meyer beef and Shed sauces. “Eventually there will be many products combining the two 100 percent natural ingredients,” she said.
Orrison called Meyer a multimillion dollar, international company “well on the way to becoming a billion dollar company.” Now Orrison said the potential opportunities are enormous. “We can’t even imagine,” she said. “This is big.”
By joining with The Shed, Meyer is entering a new arena. “They’ve never been in the barbeque world,” said Orrison, who is president-elect of the National Barbecue Association. “Now they’re all in.” Earlier this month Meyer Natural Angus was the platinum sponsor of the national association conference and trade show in San Marcos, Texas.
“Joining forces with an innovative restaurant like The Shed is just another step in making consumers aware not only of the importance of choosing sustainable and quality products, but a reminder they can be included whether you’re eating out or eating at home,” said Chris Anderson, Meyer Natural Foods director of marketing.
The partnership with Meyer comes two years after The Shed burned to the ground. “We opened up five days after the fire and have been growing every day since,” Orrison said. The larger restaurant, now 16,000 square feet, can seat around 800, and sales have surpassed those prior to the fire, she said.
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