edible notables

HIGH-TECH NUTRITION
Reno company crafts foods that the body craves.

WRITTEN BY KYLE YOUNG
PHOTOS BY DIGIMAN STUDIO

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Shakka Moore, vice president of research and development/operations at Nutrient Foods, presents an assortment of breakfast products, including parfaits, oatmeal, shakes, and breakfast burritos

Here in West Reno, there’s a company dedicated to developing and manufacturing nutrient-dense meal-replacement products. Nutrient Foods’ goal is to pack vitamins, minerals, fatty acids, and amino acids into everyday foods and drinks.

Positive effects

Shakka Moore, vice president of research and development/operations at Nutrient Foods, says the company preserves the nutrients in its foods through its processes, which limit or eliminate exposure to light, heat, and moisture, which cause nutrient degradation. 

Heat exposure during the cooking process results in the formation of acrylamide in starchy foods (fries, chips, cereals, etc.). Environmental Protection Agency leaders recognize acrylamide as “likely to be carcinogenic to humans.” Nutrient Foods processes its foods in such a way that acrylamide does not form.

Moore explains that Nutrient Foods also uses a proprietary cooling technology that chills foods with a starting temperature of negative-30 degrees. Employees use a vacuum chamber on baked goods to remove moisture from them to maintain their nutrient levels. The chamber — which from the outside looks like an enormous cerulean personal submarine — can process up to 4,400 pounds of product in one run. 

Nutrients are important to Nutrient Foods, but so is taste. The meals mimic cult classics such as (meatless) beef stroganoff, in addition to more traditional meal replacements such as bars, cookies, and shakes. Other non-traditional options, such as nutrient-boosted coffee, are available as well.

“Our Vitamin Coffee has consistently been one of our bestsellers,” says Dana Beck, chief operating officer. 

Thanks to the company’s spray-dry processing method, consumers can make its Columbian Arabica coffee with hot or cold water. And they’ll get all the vitamins they need for the day in just two cups of the drink.

Products such as this, Beck points out, can make a real difference in one’s health. 

“One meal change a day can have an extreme, positive result,” she says. 

She points to herself as an example; she says she eased decades of her own chronic pain by adopting the simple philosophy that every choice she made about movement and nutrition was a choice to feel better or worse. By making better choices, she says, she nearly alleviated all of her pain.

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Nutrient Foods’ proprietary vacuum chamber removes moisture from baked goods in order to retain their nutrient contents

Beck adds that all products are made on the premises at Nutrient Foods’ West Reno facility. All phases of the process, from research and development to manufacturing, packaging, and shipping, are done in house to ensure consistent quality. Consumers can purchase items directly from the company on its website, where recipes also can be found.

By the end of 2019, Nutrient Foods managers plan to debut a café that will be open to the public, serving finished, single-serve snack products as well as nutrient-packed coffee drinks and on-the-go breakfast items.

“By feeding your body the essential nutrients it needs, you can heal faster, perform better, and add years to your life,” Beck says. “You just have to give your body a chance to do what it is designed to do, naturally.”

Kyle Young is a freelance writer born and raised in Sparks. He writes articles about food, events, and oddities native to Nevada. He’s always on the hunt for culinary trends and treasures.

Nutrient Foods
110 Woodland Ave., Reno
877-245-3643 • Nutrientfoods.com

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