Jugofresh, the cold-pressed juice company, is closing all locations.
Founder and CEO Matthew Sherman made the announcement, effective today, March 13, in a candid email blast sent to the juice company's followers.
"The last six years have been amazing, and I feel blessed to be so embraced by the community of Miami," Sherman said, thanking his employees, vendors, and customers. "I love people and I love creating, but running a business is different than creating."
Jugofresh started as a small shop in Sunset Harbour in spring 2012. It became an overnight success among Miami Beach residents who wanted to embrace a healthier lifestyle or simply needed an after-party detox on the fly.
The shop then launched into expansion mode, opening locations throughout Miami-Dade. Music diva and sometime-vegan Beyoncé famously hopped onto the counter at the Wynwood location and posted a photo. The internet exploded, and so did Jugofresh's reputation as the place to go for juice in Miami.
Jugofresh's lifespan saw many changes. Sherman made a deal to open Jugofresh at the Whole Foods Market in downtown Miami and then closed most of the company's freestanding shops to concentrate on operating inside several Whole Foods locations, including North Miami.
In the email, Sherman took sole responsibility for the demise of the brand. "The OG store in Sunset Harbour was magic. I have learned that you cannot bottle magic and that magic can only cover a lack of business acumen for so long. At the end of the day, all failures of Jugofresh are mine. My lack of experience and the rapid expansion are what ultimately led us to close."
Sherman also listed the pros and cons of running Jugofresh, stating, "Everything else is just an excuse, so here are the excuses":
Perishable expensive products are difficult to manage
Revenue went from $3.2 million in 2013 to $870,000 in 2017 in our Sunset Harbour store
Employing people that are not making a thriving wage doesn’t feel good and is not functional for a consistent guest experience
When you sign a deal with a large company it is difficult to maintain a clear brand message
Culture is everything and its elusive
When expanding a business it's all about people and processes
Retail businesses are getting increasingly harder to maintain with rising rents and online stores
The bright side is always worth looking at…
There will be less plastic in the world with our closing
Miami has more healthy options than ever
We created a brand that celebrated the amazing diversity of Miami (Spanglish for the win)
saca lo’s have kept the party train moving in Miami for 6 straight years
The wellness community of Sunset Harbour is thriving
People are having fun being healthy
Veggies continue to become more and more celebrated.
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In a phone conversation with New Times, Sherman said he shared so much information because he figured people would ask anyway. He said that, although he lost a significant amount of money in the endeavor, it was a "great experience." The entrepreneur, who also conducts lectures and retreats, said he's looking for a job —possibly in one of Miami's kitchens.
Sherman also shared a bit of advice for his Jugofresh customers and fans of Miami's culinary scene: Patronize local businesses, or risk a world of national chains. "I make sure I go to Panther Coffee every day because I love the coffee and the company employs a lot of people."
He added that every choice a consumer makes affects the community. "When we choose to spend a dollar on a local person, not only are we supporting that person, but that person is spending money in the community. I hope people will support places like My Ceviche and Panther and Pubbelly."
Sherman said practicing "conscious consumerism" is the best way to keep your favorite mom-and-pop in business. "It's really important we spend our money in places we feel good about — or risk having Amazon trucks as our only option."