Royal Oak-based Drought, a producer of USDA organic, cold-pressed juices, has launched a new arm of its business called Drought Solutions. Services are aimed at small businesses that are seeking to resourcefully expand their operations, including food preparation, manufacturing, distribution, business planning, and growth strategies.
Drought Solutions also will assist with business plan creation, regulatory compliance, storage solutions, and branding.
“The success of neighboring businesses only helps us thrive,” says Jenny James, co-founder of the company with her three sisters and COO of Drought. “There is always initial concern that competition will hinder your own growth, but the fact is, it’s much healthier than trying to run a business on a vacant block. We want to help keep people in business.”
In turn, Drought will soon open a new 15,000-square-foot production kitchen in Berkley that will include warehouse storage space, a temperature controlled production floor, and state-of-the art equipment upgrades.
The company, launched in 2010, also plans to extend the shelf life of its juices through a process called high pressure processing. Working with Jack and Annette Aronson, co-founders of Garden Fresh Gourmet in Ferndale that they sold to Campbell Soup Co. in 2015 for $231 million, the couple are setting up a high-pressure processing facility in Taylor.
Through the cold pasteurization technique, sealed packages are set in a large vessel where they undergo a high level of isostatic pressure that kills all molds, yeast, bacteria, and other contaminants. The process extends the shelf life of food from a few days by up to 45 days, or longer.