Jay-Z Backed, Vegan, Allergy-Free Partake Cookies Are Flying Off Shelves
Now, it’s even easier to get your hands on the fast-growing vegan and allergy-free cookie line from Partake Foods. Following a 2019 investment from hip-hop mogul Jay-Z’s venture capital firm, Marcy Venture Partners, the cookie brand has scaled quickly. Jay-Z’s investment also made Partake founder Denise Woodard the first-ever woman of color to raise over $1 million for a food startup company.
The latest company milestone—and something for hungry cookie seekers to get excited about—is a partnership with Target; the cookie line is now being sold in over 1,600 Target stores nationwide. Partake is also expanding into more retailers like Sprouts and additional Whole Foods locations across the country. The company says with its latest distribution partners, its vegan treats are available in over 2,700 stores.
Woodard was inspired to create an allergy-free product after her daughter Vivienne had a near-fatal incident. She suffered an allergic reaction to a snack that contained corn. Woodard, then a national sales director at Coca-Cola, subsequently found out her daughter was also allergic to not only corn but also nuts. Growing frustrated with the lack of allergy-free options on the shelves, Woodard decided to make her own.
Her food company was born shortly thereafter. At first, she called it Vivi's Life but renamed it because she wanted all children to be able to "partake" in snacks. Now it makes cookies that are Gluten-free, vegan, non-GMO, and free of the top 14 allergens. Parents of kids with strict dietary restrictions have described her snacks as “life-changing,” according to Amazon reviews.
With the week of May 10 is Food Allergy Awareness Week, we are reminded that there are eight common allergens—peanuts, tree nuts, eggs, wheat, milk, soy, fish, shellfish— responsible for the most critical food allergy reactions in the US. What’s more, food allergies specifically impact one in 13 kids. Research has also found that African Americas have a threefold higher risk for food allergies than the general population.
Partake Foods proves that you can have great-tasting cookies (especially their latest soft-baked cookies, we review here) completely animal and allergen-free.