Some of the most innovative and successful small-batch purveyors in the gourmet food industry have soared in popularity by following this winning formula: Great product in the right packaging. T.H.E.M. (Technical Help in Engineering & Marketing), a leading provider of flexible, single-serve packaging, played a pivotal role in helping one such company, The Jam Stand.
The Jam Stand co-owners, Jessica Quon and Sabrina Valle, were featured on an episode of CNBC’s “Billion Dollar Buyer,” a reality TV show starring billionaire Tilman Fertitta, owner of many restaurants and casinos, where he invited entrepreneurs to pitch their products in hopes of a distribution deal. While Fertitta was initially impressed with The Jam Stand’s creative flavors, he could not envision serving 1.5-oz glass jars of jam to customers (knowing two thirds of the jam would go to waste), suggesting that an alternative packaging format might be a decisive factor in winning his favor and, more importantly, a coveted initial order.
In the search for the right single-serve packaging solution, Quon and Valle came to learn of N.J.-based T.H.E.M. Shortly after meeting with CEO and President Neil Kozarsky, along with Executive Vice-President Steve Belko, T.H.E.M. was initiating trial runs of two popular Jam Stand varieties in single-serve flexible stick packs. “From our origins to present day, that’s why T.H.E.M. exists,” says Kozarsky about the 46-year old business. “To help brand owners with passion and big dreams turn ideas into commercial reality — and ultimately marketplace success. We were delighted to play a role.” Fertitta was impressed with both T.H.E.M. and The Jam Stand for creating an ideal packaging solution, and he proceeded to offer The Jam Stand a lucrative deal.
Since that most uncommonly high-profile initial pairing, T.H.E.M. and The Jam Stand have continued to work closely together. Says Quon looking back, “This whole experience just opened our eyes to the power of packaging, specifically the possibilities of single-serve flexible packaging. This is truly what happens when you think outside the box.” Case in point: The Jam Stand sales have recently soared, in part because of a new offering for the company which involves home delivery meal kits. The Jam Stand realized that, working in collaboration with T.H.E.M.’s flexible packaging resources, it could offer jams, condiments and spreads in 1-oz flexible pouches as an accompaniment to a variety of now widely popular home delivery meal kits. Since engaging in this new channel of business, sales began to climb substantially for the now 11-year-old company, with 2019 being its best year yet.
The Jam Stand is on an impressive run to triple its business this year, in part due to the high demand for home delivery meal kits amid the COVID-19 pandemic, prompting many home cooks to have gourmet ingredients delivered to their door rather than going to the grocery store. Quon and Valle recognized that their jams, which often are a mix of sweet and savory, could provide that “it factor” to elevate a home-delivered meal kit from good to great. Once again, T.H.E.M.’s flexible pouch packaging resources provided the perfect vehicle to make it happen.
T.H.E.M. was founded in 1973 as one of the first providers of innovative packaging solutions in North America. The company is best known for commercializing Sanko Stick Packaging in the U.S. Working in conjunction with select packaging and equipment manufacturers, T.H.E.M. offers a comprehensive array of packaging solutions designed to take brands from initial concept to full-scale national or global production. For more information on T.H.E.M.’s flexible packaging machinery and contract manufacturing services, please visit them.net.