E&C’s Snacks: Entrepreneur Profile

Oatmeal White Chocolate Hunks from E&C's Snacks - Photo Courtesy of E&C's Snacks (Eden Prairie, MN)

Oatmeal White Chocolate Hunks from E&C’s Snacks – Photo Courtesy of E&C’s Snacks (Eden Prairie, MN)

A recipe is locked in a safe for more than 30 years, unseen by anyone except the recipe’s creator.  A nephew urges his aunt to start a business, selling her baked treats.  A cookie is called a “Hunk” because it is square in shape.

 

Oatmeal Chocolate Chip Hunks - Photo Courtesy of E&C's Snacks (Eden Prairie, MN)

Oatmeal Chocolate Chip Hunks – Photo Courtesy of E&C’s Snacks (Eden Prairie, MN)

What do these three statements have in common?  They all describe the cookie company, E&C’s Snacks.

Ellen Redmond and Casey Webber - Photo Courtesy of E&C's Snacks (Eden Prairie, MN)

Ellen (Ella) Redmond and Casey Webber – Photo Courtesy of E&C’s Snacks (Eden Prairie, MN)

Ellen (Ella) Redmond created a cookie recipe in high school.  Family and friends adored these cookies.  In fact her nephew, Casey Webber, had been eating these cookies since he was a baby.  Years later she changed the shape of the cookie (to a “Hunk”) and sent a batch to Casey, who was graduating from college.  Casey convinced Ella to go into business with him, selling the Hunks.  And Casey became the first person to see the recipe in more than 30 years!

E&C's Booth at the July Specialty Food Show in New York - Photo Courtesy of E&C's Snacks (Eden Prairie)

E&C’s Booth at the July Specialty Food Show in New York – Photo Courtesy of E&C’s Snacks (Eden Prairie, MN)


I met Ella and Casey at the Specialty Food Show in New York last month and sampled their very tasty cookies.  I also took home a “Hunk two pack.”

Heavenly Hunks from E&C's Snacks

The array of Hunks – Photo Courtesy of E&C’s Snacks (Prairie Eden, MN)

The recipe was recently tweaked so all of the Hunks are gluten-free.  Flavors include Original Oatmeal, Oatmeal White Chocolate, Oatmeal Chocolate Chip, and Oatmeal Raisin.  And the most popular flavor is Oatmeal Chocolate Chip.  (Since Chocolate Chip Cookies are so popular, this is probably not surprising.)

I asked Casey about their plans for new flavors and if these new flavors would also be gluten-free:  “Moving forward, everything will be gluten-free.  We have a couple of flavors in mind but nothing concrete yet……I can say, though, that we’re playing around with peanut butter, dark chocolate, cranberries, and toffee.  So the new flavor will most likely consist of one or two of these ingredients.”

An Early In-Store Demo - Photo Courtesy of E&C's Snacks (Eden Prairie, MN)

An Early In-Store Demo – Photo Courtesy of E&C’s Snacks (Eden Prairie, MN)

E&C’s Snacks is based in Eden Prairie, Minnesota and distribution is primarily in the Midwest.  However, they’re planning on “expanding in small circles eastward and we plan to have a presence on the East Coast in the coming months.”

Ellen (Ella) and Casey by the production line - Photo Courtesy of E&C's Snacks (Eden Prairie, MN)

Ellen (Ella) and Casey by the Production Line – Photo Courtesy of E&C’s Snacks (Eden Prairie, MN)

This is what Casey had to say about their biggest challenges:  “Our biggest challenge right now is making the Cookies.  The growth has been very rapid and with a new business there’s no track record, so we can only get so precise in our forecasting.  Aside from that, we’re just trying to find time to sleep.”

Two Hunks - Photo Courtesy of E&C's Snacks (Eden Prairie)

Two Hunks – Photo Courtesy of E&C’s Snacks (Eden Prairie)

 

I hope these entrepreneurs find time to sleep and I look forward to hearing about E&C’s new flavor.  I’ll check back with them.

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