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Redefining Raw: Meet Brad Gruno, Founder of Brad’s Raw Foods
During our experiment with a raw plant-based diet, we fell in love with the super yummy AND crunchy treats from Brad’s Raw Foods. We are excited to bring you the amazing story behind founder Brad Gruno’s journey into raw and his passion for bringing healthy snacks to America. Thank you Brad, we LOVE your chips!
It’s always crunch time for Brad Gruno, founder and owner of Brad’s Raw Foods, the creator of Brad’s Raw Chips. Brad’s company makes nine varieties of crisp and tasty raw vegetable chips and three kinds of raw kale munchies – each CRUNCHY, delicious and nutritious. Available at Whole Foods and Wegmans, these organic, vegan, gluten-free, snacks please the palate while tickling the tongue. From jalapeno hot to sweet potato smooth, the chips offer raw foodies – and all of us – the delectable crunch we crave.
Three years ago, Brad’s Raw Foods started out in a small garage on an organic farm. Today the company manufactures chips in a huge facility in Buck’s County, Pennsylvania. How did this miracle come to be?
About five years ago, Brad, who was a meat and potatoes kind of guy then, faced some health problems. “I was about 40 pounds overweight and my cholesterol was through the roof,” he said. His aunt invited him to a dinner catered by Arnold’s Way in Lansdale, Pennsylvania. Although Brad didn’t know before he arrived, the dinner was vegan and raw. Brad loved the food, especially a pie made from avocado and cacao powder. The dinner became his “aha” moment. He was intrigued by the idea of a raw food diet.
Five days later Brad watched “Eating,” a DVD which his aunt had given him. That DVD changed his life. From “Eating,” Brad learned that cooking food can destroy beneficial enzymes which help with digestion and disease prevention. He also learned that there are many medical benefits to a raw food diet, including cancer prevention and improvements in patients with diabetes or autism. Brad was hooked. He stayed on a raw diet for a whole year. After six straight months on the raw food diet, Brad had lost the 40 pounds and his cholesterol was back in a normal range. He felt terrific.
Recalling that moment, Brad explained that some people may experience detox symptoms in the first 30 days after switching to raw, especially if they’ve been eating a mostly meat diet. “But just stick with it,” he said encouragingly. “If you can just make it past 30 days, you will feel better then you ever have in your whole life. You owe it to yourself!”
Since then, Brad has become an advocate for organic farming and a raw food diet. Originally, he created the recipes for the raw, vegan veggie chips so he could make great snacks for himself. He never thought about commercializing them until he gave some of his homemade chips to a friend who was marketing salsa at a trade show. The crowd reaction to the salsa was so-so, but everyone loved the chips. So three years, many new stores and fabulous employees later, Brad’s Raw Foods is growing and thriving.
Brad’s words of wisdom for other entrepreneurs: “Start small businesses. Have ideas and be passionate about them.”
Thank you Brad for following your passion and bringing us these amazing chips and leafy kale!!!