Investing in Vt. business equals a lifetime of peanut butter - WCAX.COM Local Vermont News, Weather and Sports-

Investing in Vt. business equals a lifetime of peanut butter

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The Croes family goes nutty for Vermont Peanut Butter.

"September 7th we bought 11 jars of peanut butter and we were out in three weeks," Elizabeth Croes said.

They don't eat much meat, so the almond and peanut butters mixed with concoctions of dried fruit, nuts and even chocolate, hit the spot.

"It's tasty; it's very yummy," said Molly Croes, 7.

"We really want it to come out in these packets. It would be more convenient than having a picnic (with jars)," Elizabeth said.

The family is getting their wish; Vermont Peanut Butter hopes to expand into single-serve packets so it's easier to take on the go. But it's reaching out to the community for help; VTPB is trying to raise $50,000 to launch the new line.

"When we have this equipment in place, we'll be able to manufacture over 10,000 packets a day," said Chris Kaiser of VTPB.

For $1,000, 50 investors will get two limited-edition Mason jars that can be filled with any VTPB variety weekly for the rest of their lives. It's calling the fundraiser "Forever Nuts." People can fill up at its Morrisville location and can pick two other people to fill up jars for them. People out of state can pay to have it shipped.

Chris Kaiser: For the $1,000, you get free peanut butter forever.

Reporter Gina Bullard: How much are we talking?

Chris Kaiser: You can come fill up every week forever, so that's a lot of peanut butter.

In two weeks, the company has 17 out of its 50 investors.

It's an idea four years in the making.

"It was a very surreal experience to say the least," Kaiser said.

VTPB was on its way to filling single-serving packets when Tropical Storm Irene washed away its Waterbury location.

"We had the pouches they were designed and in-house, we had a few components of the machine in-house, and all that was destroyed," Kaiser said.

After getting back on their feet at a new Morrisville location, founder Chris Keiser knew it was time to try it again and get the community involved.

Gina Bullard: Don't you think you'll be losing money in the long run?

Chris Kaiser: No, because what we're gaining is the opportunity to grow the packet business which will be 20-times larger than the jar business would ever be for us.

For the Croes family, it's a deal they ate up as soon as they heard about it. VTPB ranges in price from $6-$11 a jar. The family says they'll be seeing a return in no time.

"It took us about 30 seconds to realize the return on investment would be within the year," Elizabeth said.

Gina Bullard: What do you think about a lifetime of free peanut butter?

Molly Croes: I think that's awesome!

The lifetime promise is not transferable to other peanut butter lovers, and if the company goes out of business, investors might have to switch to turkey sandwiches.

Vermont Peanut Butter hopes to have all 50 investors by next week and they hope to be filling up single-serve packets by December.

Click here for more information on the fundraising effort.

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