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Our Founder and CEO Matthew de Bord spent four years living in Japan learning to appreciate the native cuisine. Upon returning home to the states, he considered how to bring some of that appreciation, and cuisine, to the U.S. In 1995, he had an epiphany. He thought, “What if I make tomato nori (seaweed)?” With the freshest fruits and vegetables he could find, Matthew created our first seaweed alternative wraps in his kitchen.
After some initial product tests, and conversations with chefs, he realized he was onto something big. The products were healthy, colorful and gave chefs a host of new menu ideas. He worked with a team at the USDA until his product was perfect and ready for the market. Four years later, this small seaweed alternative company grew into an industry leader, creating vegetable and fruit-based sandwich wraps as alternatives to popular food products like bread and tortillas.
NewGem Foods is the original creator of patented 100% plant-based wraps. Their products are part of a fast-growing grocery category driven by consumers’ demands for healthy alternatives to fit their dietary needs. Today, NewGem Foods is still owned by Matthew de Bord and his family.