Home Back Issues September 2012 With a grain of salt

With a grain of salt

| Print |  Email
Articles - September 2012
Monday, August 27, 2012

BY LINDA BAKER

0912 Launch JacobsenSalt
Ben Jacobsen, CEO of Jacobsen Sea Salt
// Photo by Sierra Breshears

Ben Jacobsen learned to appreciate good salt while living in Scandinavia, first as an MBA student in Denmark and then as a marketing professional in Norway. So when he moved to Portland a few years ago, he was surprised to discover sea salt was not available as a locally sourced ingredient. “I thought something was missing,” Jacobsen says. To fill the gap, Jacobsen started harvesting the mineral from Netarts Bay, something that hadn’t been done since the days of Lewis and Clark. A 40-hour process from start to finish, Jacobsen’s salt-making technique involves boiling the sea water to reduce the volume and “pare back” calcium and magnesium, which can lead to a bitter aftertaste. “Clean and briny” is the goal, Jacobsen says. Then he lets the water evaporate slowly, followed by a “final drain and dry.” Jacobsen spent three years perfecting his technique, then made his first sale last September, when New Seasons ordered 12 cases, 3 pounds each, one for each store. A year later, Jacobsen and two employees make about 100 pounds of the finishing salt a week, and his product is available in 56 stores in the Northwest and 30 restaurants in Portland, including Ned Ludd and Lincoln. Dovetail, a restaurant in New York, is also a client. “Anybody can make really bad salt,” says Jacobsen. “But it’s really difficult to make great salt.”

COMPANY: Jacobsen Sea Salt

PRODUCT: Hand-harvested sea salt

CEO: Ben Jacobsen

HEADQUARTERS: Portland

LAUNCHED: 2011

AT A GLANCE: Financed through savings and “a large credit card.” Raised $30,000 through Kickstarter. Preparing first investment round — less than $1 million — to build a processing facility on the Oregon Coast. “We currently make the salt in Portland, which is a bit silly because we have to drive water over the pass.”

SALES PITCH: “We just want to make the best product possible and really let that speak for itself. Our chefs love it, and that’s what we’re going to focus on.”

 

More Articles

100 Best Nonprofits announced

News
Thursday, October 02, 2014

100NP14logo4WebOregon Business magazine has named the sixth annual 100 Best Nonprofits to Work for in Oregon.


Read more...

Gone Girl

News
Monday, September 29, 2014
roundup-logo-thumb-14BY LINDA BAKER | OB EDITOR

Wehby disappears, Kitzhaber fails to disclose and Seattle gets bike share before Portland.


Read more...

Measure 91: What Oregon Businesses Need to Know

Contributed Blogs
Wednesday, October 15, 2014
91 thumbBY DIANE BUISMAN

Some common misconceptions employers have about marijuana.


Read more...

What I'm Reading

October 2014
Thursday, September 25, 2014

Nick Herinckx, CEO of Obility, and Jake Weatherly, CEO of SheerID, share what they've been reading.


Read more...

The 100 Best Nonprofits to Work for in Oregon 2014

October 2014
Thursday, September 25, 2014
14BY KIM MOORE

Proud, diverse and underpaid.

Pride in their organizations’ mission, fairness in the treatment of women and ethnic minorities, flexible work schedules — these are just a handful of workplace characteristics that employees of this year’s 100 Best Nonprofits appreciate about their organizations.


Read more...

Two Sides of the Coin

Contributed Blogs
Friday, September 26, 2014
0926 iphone6-thumbBY JASON NORRIS | GUEST BLOGGER

This post focuses on the recent release of the new Apple iPhone as well as Alibaba's IPO, the largest U.S. IPO in history.


Read more...

Launch

October 2014
Thursday, September 25, 2014
BY JESSICA RIDGWAY

October's Launch article features Soul Kitchen, Easy Company and Slick's Big Time BBQ.


Read more...
Oregon Business magazinetitle-sponsored-links-02
SPONSORED LINKS