Robeks carefully selects its fruit suppliers, and Zola delivers on two important missions
Superfruits from the Brazilian rainforest make up a significant part of the Robeks menu. Açaí, for instance, is a small purple berry that grows on certain palm trees in the Amazon River basin. Robeks customers are big fans of açaí because it is loaded with nutrients and antioxidants, tastes like a mixture of raspberry and chocolate and is surprisingly low in calories. But that’s not the only reason why açaí is special.
Brazilians have prized açaí for years, but it was relatively unknown Stateside until five or six years ago — and Robeks was the first smoothie company to put açaí on its menu. As Robeks educated Americans about the benefits of açaí, it was joined by another superfruit pioneer, Zola, a Brazilian Superfruit beverage company that since 2009 has supplied Robeks with the highest-quality Açaí Especial from the Amazon rainforest.
The efforts of Robeks and Zola have helped boost açaí’s international popularity, which has made it an even more valuable crop for residents of the struggling city of Igarape-Miri. Since açaí grows naturally there in abundance, the fruit’s popularity has reduced the economic pressure to clear-cut land for other forms of agriculture. The city’s residents harvest the berries, then rush them to the Zola processing facility where they’re cleaned, pulped and flash-frozen to preserve nutrients.
Aside from Zola’s ability to deliver fresh açaí, Robeks also loves the company’s commitment to sustainability and the help Zola extends to the people who harvest their acai, through Project Zola.
“Zola and Robeks work together to provide customers with the best açaí for their smoothies,” says Robeks CEO Steve Davidson. “Açaí helps our customers get a health boost, and working with Zola helps us keep farmers and the Amazon healthy, too. It’s a win-win.”