Stephanie and Shawn transitioned to a plant-based diet in spring of 2010 after observing the positive changes that came about with some friends who had made the switch months earlier. The trouble was this; although they loved vegetables (and food in general!), they still had a 'meaty' palette and found that few of their cravings could be met by existing food products, especially with a gluten sensitivity. This conundrum led to experimentation with jackfruit.
Stephanie decided to attempt tamales, as they were a sorely missed favorite. After some experimentation (one version was so salty the dog reacted by immediately drinking a gallon of water) Jack Tamales was born! The two were so happy with the results that they decided to sell them on the streets of First Friday, Kansas City's artwalk, where they had been previously selling art.
Two months later, they were invited to participate in Kansas City's Greenfest and subsequently asked to retail their product on the shelves of an independent grocery store. As of today, Mean Vegan Products, Inc. has top selling products in 50+ brick and mortar stores in the Midwestern region of the United States in addition to hone delivery services and nationwide online retailers.