My friends began talking about a lemon juice, cayenne pepper, and maple syrup detox program called the Master Cleanse in the 1990s, and the variety of juice “fast” diets has grown wildly since then. There’s the Cooler Cleanse, which was cofounded by actress Salma Hayek. And Organic Avenue detox, a favorite of goop.com‘s Gwyneth Paltrow. In Manhattan, a new juice bar seems to open monthly. But the different methods of processing juice, and even the language used to talk about the health benefits–from scientific to idealistic–can make choosing a juice detox program confusing.
The founders of BluePrint saw that as an opportunity.
Their company’s success–BluePrint sold $20 million in juices and nut bars last year–can be traced in large part to the way it communicates with customers about how the juice cleanse works. The ingredients are written in large letters across the front of every bottle, and a numbered system guides participants throughout each day. Supportive emails accompany the cleanse routine, encouraging participants to see it through. Fast Company sat down with founders Zoe Sakoutis and Erica Huss and learned that, along with six pounds of organic produce in the green juice, BluePrint was designed from the start to change the way people think about juicing.
“At the end of the day, a cleanse is very debated in the medical community, but you have to trust your body,” says Sakoutis. “We’re not trying to be prescriptive about it. It’s fruits and vegetables.”
BluePrint does not come cheap (at up to $12 for a single bottle, and $65 per day for a cleanse program), and there are scads of other options on the market. So how did BluePrint emerge as the leader? It started humbly enough in 2000, when Zoe Sakoutis, a certified nutritional consultant, sought relief from a common cold and was turned on to juice fasting by a raw-food enthusiast. She began experimenting with her own mixes, and selling them to friends via mail order soon after. Sakoutis saw that there was a growing business in her backyard (though the organic vegetables were being sourced elsewhere), and teamed with former colleague Erica Huss to hone the operation, which uses a sophisticated high-pressure extraction system.
In 2012, they expanded beyond the cleanse market and into the cold-pressed, single serving world. That’s when Whole Foods Market and other grocers began carrying the tall, colorful juices in stores, and revenue increased 100% as a result. This past December BluePrint was acquired by the Hain Celestial Group for an undisclosed sum.