Justin Gold is the founder of Justin’s, a natural foods company that makes naturally delicious, high-quality nut butters and peanut butter cups. From humble beginnings at local Farmers’ Markets to launching a national brand, Justin’s is now one of the country’s fastest growing natural foods companies, with Gold serving as an innovator and thought-leader in the space.
The Justin’s story began when Gold, a lover of the active lifestyle, moved to Boulder, Colorado in his 20’s. In order to fuel his long bike rides, Gold embarked on a mission to create new varieties of nut butter that not only packed the protein, but also tasted great. An assortment of these nut butter creations began to fill his cabinets but, with a house full of hungry roommates, his flavorful recipes kept disappearing. In order to hang on to his handmade foods, Gold began to write his name on the jars, “Justin’s.”
In 2004, after two years of experimenting with nuts and a simple food processor in his home kitchen, Gold prepared his first business plan and launched Justin’s. With his entrepreneurial and forward-thinking flair, Gold taught himself the art of bootstrapping, raising angel and institutional capital and building a first-class management team to help him execute his vision and make his palate-pleasing nut butters accessible to everyone.
As founder, Gold primarily focuses on driving new innovation, growing the business and ultimately building lasting relationships with consumers by consistently offering a delicious product they can trust and believe in.
Gold attended Dickinson College, graduating with a degree in environmental studies in 2000. It was his experience at Dickinson College that gave him the confidence to walk into a business library and research how to write a business plan. While working to get Justin’s off the ground, Gold worked at outdoor-gear retailer REI. While at REI, Gold came up with the idea for nut butter squeeze packs. After seeing all of the squeezable energy boosts sold at the retailer, he decided that nut butter squeeze packs would provide the perfect dose of protein-packed goodness to those looking for a clean, on-the-go snack.
Justin’s has received numerous local and national accolades and ranked in the Top 15 on the Inc. 500/5000 Fastest Growing Companies list in the Food and Beverage category two years in a row. Most recently, Gold was recognized as the 2013 Ernst & Young Entrepreneur of the Year in the Mountain Desert Region. Gold is a passionate entrepreneur who encourages others to follow their passion and never stop asking questions along the way. He lives in Boulder with his wife and children, finding his work/life balance by enjoying an active lifestyle there as an avid trail runner, mountain biker, skier and backpacker.