Black Entrepreneur Makes History as the First to Open a Juice Bar Inside Whole Foods

Chris Goode, owner and CEO of Ruby Jean's Juicery in Kansas City

Chris Goode, owner and CEO of Ruby Jean’s Juicery, has opened his newest location inside a Whole Foods store in Kansas City, Missouri, making history as one of the first Black-owned stores to have an actual brick and mortar space inside of the popular grocer. Chris dedicates his success to his late grandmother, Ruby Jean, after which he named his juice bar.

Chris first thought of the idea after a friend introduced him to juice cleansing. He realized that it would have been beneficial for his grandmother, who died at the age of 61 from Type 2 diabetes, if she had known and understood the importance of healthy eating and drinking.

“Once I got into juicing and health I realized that 61 was just way too young and [I] started to switch my lifestyle and press my family to do the same. In 2014 I decided to put all I had into my passion and newfound purpose,” Chris said in an interview with Because of Them We Can.

Chris launched his first juice bar in 2015 in Kansas City as well, which was then considered to be a food desert. But since they’ve opened their doors, they have seen a steady increase in customers every month. In fact, they have been named as the Top 1 juice bar in Missouri and one of Yelp’s Top 100 out of almost 3 million businesses in 2016.

The company’s accomplishments reached the radar of the U.S.’s healthiest supermarket, Whole Foods, who offered Chris the opportunity to not only be a supplier in the store, but to operate a brick and mortar store inside one of their stores.

“For us, that’s historic. That history is hard to quantify but it’s no less impactful,” Chris said.

Even more, Ruby Jean’s Juicery was also an official partner of the U.S. Gymnastics Championship this year. He has two active locations in Kansas City and one licensee in Springfield, Missouri, and is already planning to expand in other states as well. Aside from cold-pressed juices, they also offer healthy breakfast and lunch food options.

With the new location, Chris hopes to inspire more people with the story about his grandmother.

“We truly feel we can empower people to live healthy by way of sharing my grandma’s story. I feel there’s a Ruby Jean in every family no matter who you are,” he adds.

 

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