Whether it is against aging, allergies, for a good digestion or the fight against cancer – super–foods are literally on everyone’s lips. Most of the time, however, these supplements are enriched with unnecessary ingredients such as sugar or simply ineffective in its recipe. Which is why Ninja Foods’ founders Marco Trunz and Sandra Martens believe in a puristic approach to use the highest quality ingredients such as spirulina, turmeric or chlorella in their purest form. The result is their Super Green Ninja Powder – a formula that consists of a mixture of 13 powerful, natural plants, fruits, vegetables, seeds, grasses, algae or leaves that are extremely rich in vitamins, minerals, antioxidants, enzymes and other substances.
Founder Marco Trunz started sharing his love for nutrition and alternative healing methods from an early age. Ever since, he has been engaged in food research and innovation, driven by the idea that food can replace medicine. His goal is to create things that actually make you feel good. “Through the use of super–foods, we certainly see that you cannot only improve your physical but also your mental state, which is an experience that we are trying to bring to our customers,” says founder Marco, “super-foods can improve cognitive function, enhance your physical performance, support your digestion and clear skin issues through healing your gut.” Co-founder Sandra Martens discovered her passion for the human body during her studies of alternative medicine and quickly focused on developing raw, natural and unprocessed foods that make healthy eating easier for everyone. Both could not find a super–food mixture on the European market that convinced them: Either the recipes were not put together sensibly – especially with regard to the absorption of vitamins and minerals – or they contained too much sugar. Additionally, most of the products were overpriced and had too little effect. “After consuming different super–foods every morning for years, we decided to create a mixture that covers all aspects: the most effective ingredients, a smooth taste and an enhanced absorption of vitamins and minerals through the right combination of active ingredients,” says Sandra.
The desire to develop a complex product, based on clinical studies prompted the two of them to develop Ninja Foods: science-based nutrition. For one year, they experimented with new ingredients to create more innovative blends that offer both performance and taste. The result: a powder based on 13 organic ingredients that can be added to smoothies, juices, oatmeal, yoghurt, homemade snacks, salads or dips. “A blend of herbs, adaptogens and whole foods, which can be consumed daily to enhance your diet, without ‘overdosing’ on vitamins or minerals,” says Marco. All mixtures are vegan, raw, 100 % natural, contain no gluten, dairy products, soy, artificial colors, GMOs or additives and are sourced as locally as possible.
In addition to a scientifically based production, sustainability is also an important topic at Ninja Foods. From the procurement of raw materials and the manufacturing process to the delivery to the customer, sustainability is part of their development process. When it comes to the packaging of their products, the company pays attention to compostability: The packaging components comply with EU standards 13432 and are certified for both domestic and industrial composting by the OK Compost mark of the TÜV-Institute. The materials also meet the requirements of the Food Contact Regulation in Europe and the USA. “Since our launch we have been very aware of reducing our footprint in the consumer market. Our Super Green Ninja Powder is packaged in a fully compostable packaging, and we do have a strict zero plastic policy in our company,” says Marco. It should be noted that the term compostable – in contrast to biodegradable – refers to products that consistently decompose with other natural materials; it is an accelerated and controlled form of biodegradation. Once the process is fully completed, compostable materials provide the soil with nutrients; this must be done in an environment that offers warmth, moisture and an adequate level of oxygen. In order for packaging to be 100 % compostable, it usually has to be dismantled without leaving any residue within 90-180 days; the biomass is transformed into a non-toxic, nutrient-rich soil without leaving any traces of the product.
To improve the livelihoods of impoverished farmers in Africa, with every product sold, Ninja Foods plants a tree in cooperation with Trees for the Future. By specifically planting degraded land, the project supports families to switch from unsustainable cultivation methods to a forest garden system. So far, around 150 million trees have been planted and the lives of almost 30,000 people have been positively influenced; almost 8,000 acres have been restored and nearly 200,000 thousand tons of carbon have been sequestered. Trees for the Future currently works with more than 3,000 farming families in six countries south of the Sahara. Their projects focus on implementing forest garden programs in Cameroon, Kenya, Senegal, Uganda and Tanzania. Latest data suggests that this approach ends hunger for most families after the first year. Only 13 % of the project participants had sufficient sources of food when they joined the program; a year later, 86% of the farmers have had enough food. A total of 82 % of Ninja Foods’ farmers have seen significant increases in income and more than 92 % are now able to adapt to unforeseen circumstances (source: Ninja Foods). By reducing the use of destructive farming practices such as burning, clearing and plowing, forest gardens reduce deforestation by eliminating farmers’ reliance on forests for food, wood and many other non-wood forest products. At Ninja Foods, they work with and support like-minded farmers to produce the best and most nutritious greens for their customers. For the company, this is the only way to create transparency, offer good value for money and guarantee the highest quality of their ingredients.
by Marie Klimczak