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NewGem Foods

NewGem Foods is the original creator of patented, 100% plant-based Sandwich Wraps (GemWraps), a new product category. NewGem also recently introduced its food service Sushi Wrap line to retail for home sushi chefs. Prior to earning his MBA, Matthew deBord, Founder and President spent 4 years living in Japan where he grew to appreciate the cuisine and culture. Among his favorites were the fresh, healthy food items found at Japanese convenience stores. Returning home to the states, he considered how to bring some of that appreciation, and cuisine, to the U.S. He also missed the easy access to healthy, affordable, grab-and-go foods.

His career focused on entrepreneurial finance and he was always looking for the right opportunity to start a company. In 1995, he wondered if nori, seaweed used to wrap sushi, could be made from tomatoes. With the freshest fruits and vegetables he could find, Matthew created NewGem Foods first seaweed alternative wraps in his sister's kitchen. (They were horrible.)

Serendipity happened when his sister saw a news report about the USDA's Agricultural Research Service helping companies develop food products. Dr. Tara McHugh, ARS WRRC Center Director, agreed to help Matthew pursue his dream to start a company to make healthy wraps. Starting as a small seaweed alternative company, today NewGem is an industry leader using its innovative wrap technology to disrupt traditional foods like bread and tortillas. NewGem products are part of a fast-growing grocery category driven by consumer demand for plant-based, healthy alternatives to fit their many dietary preferences.

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