The annual Greater New Haven Chamber of Commerce awards luncheon on Thursday, September 28 will celebrate the diverse accomplishments of members of the region’s business community – including an entrepreneurial business with the “juice” to grow from a home-based start-up in Wallingford to employ more than 120 people in New Haven in less than a decade. The company - FreshBev LLC - produces two primary lines of beverages - RIPE Craft Juice and RIPE Craft Bar Juices, bringing real fresh juice to the market, and connecting local farmers to consumers by using only ingredients that could be traced back to the grower and region.
“We don’t heat our juice, we don’t pasteurize it. It’s cold-pressed,” founder Michel Boissy told NewsChannel 8 earlier this year. “We use an amazing new technology called high-pressure processing, which does everything that pasteurization does minus the heat. So we’re not heating the juice, we’re not killing the color, flavor, aroma, nutritional profile and all of what fresh juice is.”
The company’s website explains that “In the fall of 2008, tired of being subjected to the big ol’ bottle of day glow “margarita” mix, childhood friends and founders Michel Boissy and Ryan Guimond came to the conclusion that they had no choice but to create the first line of legit, handcrafted bar juices. With Mike's experience in high end kitchens and behind the bar, coupled with Ryan’s picky palate and a shared love of a good cocktail, these drink mix mercenaries set forth to create the nation's first pure squeezed, cold pressed, Bar Juice™.
The results are making local history, and spreading. RIPE Craft Juices are available nationally through Whole Foods and select regional grocery chains.
The Chamber’s business leadership event is highlighted by the presentation of the Community Leadership Award to an individual who has made an outstanding contribution to the Greater New Haven Community. That award will go to longtime Quinnipiac University President John Lahey, who has announced his retirement. The other awards to be presented by the Greater New Haven Chamber of Commerce include:
Small Business Achievement Award Four Flours Baking Company
Legislative Leadership Award First Selectman Mike Freda, Town of North Haven
Achievement in Manufacturing Award Cowles & Company
Leadership in Healthcare Award Cornell Scott-Hill Center
Community Partnership Award Easter Seals Goodwill Industries
Developer Investment Award Randy Salvatore, RMS Companies
Alumnus of the Leadership Center Award Paul Bartosic, Harvard Pilgrim Health Care
Volunteer of the Year Award Mary Grande, New Reach
The awards will be presented on September 28 at the Omni Hotel in New Haven.