Business

Urban Remedy gives subscription commerce a good cleanse

You know that semi-neurotic gleam in your friend’s eye when they’re telling you about an amazing juice cleanse they just did? If you use this startup’s service, you’ll be That Guy in short order.

Urban Remedy is the latest in a burst of launches from LA-area incubator Science. Science loves itself some subscription commerce, but this latest launch — a service consisting of organic raw juice priced on a daily basis and available in several results-focused formulations — takes the format to a whole new level. It’s like they’re testing us or something.

We got in touch with Urban Remedy mastermind/chef/guru/founder Neka Pasquale via email. She said that rather than being earthy-crunchy and out-there, juicing-as-a-service is just right for the modern tech environment.

“We’re getting more and more used to a fast-paced efficiency in our lives. We also like to know all about how things work, which carries into a growing curiosity about our own bodies and how what we eat affects our health,” Pasquale said.

“There’s also a focus on health as a way to unplug — yes, you may own the newest smartphone or [may have] just developed a highly successful mobile app, but you know when to step back, go for a run, or boost your energy with a juice cleanse.”

And she makes a good point. With our Nike Runkeepers and our Fitbits and our sleep-tracking, step-logging gadgets and apps, we’re more self-obsessed than ever, but with an eye toward wellness rather than pure vanity.

The startup’s lineup of cleanses aim to do different things for different people. There are detox cleanses, weight-loss cleanses, cleanses for people who feel too chilly in the cooler months. UR can even create custom cleanses to cure what ails ya. In addition to the juices, UR also provides meal replacement “shake”-type beverages, healthy snacks, and visually organized data on what exactly is making its way through your digestive system and how it could help you feel better.

“The ‘Internet lifestyle’ can sometimes mean long hours working in front of a computer and not necessarily paying attention to what you put in your body, from too much caffeine to too many processed foods,” said Pasquale.

“Urban Remedy helps those with busy lifestyles who want to make healthy choices but just don’t have the time — and I think a great deal of people living the Internet lifestyle fit that bill completely.”

Granted, it takes a modicum of time to make fresh juice and rinse off your trusty juicer, but Pasquale also says that the time UR saves its users is time that would be spent in education and research. The lady has a master’s degree in Chinese medicine and is a licensed acupuncturist and herbalist. You can search Google for ages for the perfect juice recipe for low energy or unhealthy skin or cellulite or hangovers, but you’ll get a lot of conflicting information, much of it from total amateurs.

Also, you save time in the produce aisle (and funding parking near your busy, urban supermarket), Pasquale points out.

But all that convenience ain’t cheap. A week’s worth of juice will set you back as much as an LA haircut (around $350 for you less fancy types); juice for one person, one day costs around $50 or $60, depending on the cleanse you choose. But people are looking for better answers and better health, and those prices aren’t too steep for the newer breeds of fitness-focused wellness seekers.

“By partnering with Science, Inc., we are taking their background and expertise in consumer acquisition to scale what has until now been a local business to a national level,” Pasquale said.

“We’ve built a new production center and are ready to ship Urban Remedy goods from coast to coast and everywhere in between.”

Science CEO Mike Jones said in a statement on the news, “By powering Urban Remedy, one of the most sought-after niche health brands, with a technology platform that presents and engages users through site infographics, helpful charts, and funny stats, then distributes fresh-made products to their doorsteps as soon as next day, we hope it’ll be easier for more people to discover and enjoy delicious alternatives to the all-too-available American junk food diet on a regular basis.”

Top image courtesy of vanillaechoes, Shutterstock


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