Big Award for a Small Company

Great news, chums!

Our company Verve, inc. just won the U.S. Small Business Administration (SBA) award for Rhode Island Woman-Owned Small Business of the Year. The award recognizes our founder and president Deborah Schimberg’s leadership in developing a successful business, increasing jobs, growing sales significantly, and creating innovative products like Glee Gum and new Glee Gum Pops. Woo-hoo!

Deborah Schimberg You’ve probably heard our story before– but just in case you haven’t, here’s the scoop! Schimberg founded Verve back in 1995 as a result of her interest in sustainable development. While visiting an economically depressed community in Northern Guatemala, she learned that all chewing gum was once made with a rainforest tree sap called chicle— until 100% synthetic gum bases became the norm. But the harvest of chicle provides an ongoing source of income for skilled laborers and their families. This in turn helps to conserve the rainforest in Mexico and Guatemala, giving trees more value standing than felled for lumber. Inspired, Schimberg returned to her Providence, RI home and used chicle to design Verve’s first product, a Make Your Own Chewing Gum Kit.

In the 20 years since its inception, our company has expanded from selling educational candy-making kits for kids to producing the leading natural chewing gum on the market, Glee Gum. Available in nine flavors and sold throughout North America and beyond, Glee is the only chewing gum to be Non-GMO Project Verified, Fair Trade certified, kosher certified, and still made with chicle.

In the past year, we introduced Glee Gum Pops, the world’s first and only natural gum-filled lollipops. We also won Green America’s People & Planet Award, gifting 250 free activity kits to US public schools with the prize money, and started a scholarship program at the Maya Intercultural University of Quintana Roo, whose students come from chicle-producing communities. Aaand, we completed renovation of our new Verve headquarters in a formerly abandoned South Providence building just this week. It’s been a big year!

Thanks for all your Gleeful support. We couldn’t do it without you!

So Many Gleeful Events!

So, there’s gonna be a LOT of Glee spread this week. Here are some of the fun upcoming events where you’re apt to see our gum. And by “see,” we mean chew. Hope there’s one happening near you!

Glee Gum Sampling

The Lady Project Summit of PVD Lady Project at the VETS Memorial Auditorium, Providence, RI  ~ 4/18/15

Buzzfest 33 with Backstage Artist Lounge in The Woodlands, TX ~ 4/18/15

Spring Food Fest/ Anniversary Event at Ward’s Super Market, Gainsville, FL ~ 4/18/15

18th Anniversary Event at Healthy Horizons, Hammond, IN ~ 4/18/15

Grand Opening & Earth Day Event at Lassen’s, Ventura, CA ~ 4/18/15

Customer Appreciation Event at Healthy Living Organic & Natural Market, Lakewood Ranch, FL ~ 4/18/15

40th Anniversary Event at Nature’s Way, Easton, PA ~ 4/18/15

Earth Day Celebration at Whole Foods MarketBeverly Hills, CA ~ 4/19 – 4/21/15

Earth Appreciation Day at Diane’s New Dawn, St. Augustine, FL ~ 4/22/15

Earth Day Event at The Apple Crate II, Fayetteville, NC ~ 4/22/15

7th Annual Green Fair at Blue Cross Blue Shield Headquarters, Providence, RI ~ 4/22/15

Featured Fan: Bubblegum Buddy

The state motto of North Carolina is “Esse quam videri”—meaning to be, rather than to seem to be. Well, Chloe H. of Asheville, NC does her state proud. She is a true, blue chum to gum!

Chloe recently wrote to us to say, “I was always looking for a gum free of aspartame and GMOs. When I found Glee Gum, I was overjoyed to have discovered something that tasted so good, but was free of everything unhealthy, regular gum has. I also really like the packaging. It looks vintage!”

When she’s not busy chewing gum, you can find this vegetarian Carolinian reading, practicing Modern Dance, and assisting PETA with petitions. When she is chewing gum, Chloe reports, “My favorite is the bubblegum flavor. You make this classic taste better than any other gum on the market. Whenever I go to Earth Fare, I always make sure to get two packs to last. And my friends always compliment me on my delicious gum.”

See what we mean? She’s a friend to the end. As for the bubble in this picture she sent us—can it be what it seems to be? Never mind, we don’t want to burst it to see. Thanks for chew-sing Glee, Chloe!

Featured Fan March-April 2015 Chloe

If you would like to be considered as our next “Featured Fan”—and win a case of Glee Gum for the honor— simply send an email introducing yourself to our mascot, gleeguy@gleegum.com

 

A Gummy Reason to Enjoy Science Fair Season

It’s strange that science fair season in schools doesn’t happen around Halloween– because it can really freak out students and parents alike. But fear not, chums! We’ve got some fun ideas to see you through. Like, why not make it all about GUM?

Science Fair ProjectThere are lots of kid-friendly, gum-related hypotheses that can be developed for science fair projects. Start by exploring simple questions like: which gum brand or flavor lasts the longest? Which bubble gum brand makes the biggest bubbles? Which gum tastes the sweetest? In her science fair project a few years back (pictured above), Kayla from CA examined what makes Glee more environmentally friendly than other gum– and got an “A”!

For a greater challenge, take a gander at some of the recent studies on chewing gum. See what further research you can do on gum’s surprising benefits, like the ability to boost test scores, counter fatigue, and lower stress levels. If you think chewing gum improves concentration, how might you confirm this? For another interesting angle, watch this chewing gum ad examine social perceptions of gum-chewing by featuring identical twins.

Our Make Your Own Candy Kits and gum base also make great jumping-off points for experimentation. And you can find more fun facts and inspiration in our site’s sections Learn More and For Educators & Inquiring Minds. For other gummy ideas, check out eHow and HubPages. Before long, you may find yourself wishing that science fair season would “stick around” all year!

The Easiest Bubblegum Ice Cream Recipe Ever

I scream, you scream, we all scream for ice cream!

Especially when we look at the ingredients in most ice cream.

Give your vocal chords a rest and your mouth a treat with sweet, natural, homemade, bubblegum ice cream– made from bananas! No matter the season. You don’t need a reason. It’s ICE CREAM and it’s always delicious.

 INGREDIENTS

INSTRUCTIONS

  1. Peel bananas.
  2. Place them in the freezer for an hour.
  3. Slice bananas.
  4. Put them in the blender & blend to a creamy consistency.
  5. Stir in Glee Gum pieces.
  6. Scoop & enjoy!

Banana Bubblegum Ice Cream

Featured Fan: Our Inbox Idol

Sometimes an email can brighten your whole week. Such was the case with this lovely message we recently received from Ellie B. of Columbus, OH.

Featured Fan Ellie B

“I just wanted to thank your company for the wonderful sugar-free gum. I have a rare stomach disease where my stomach & digestive tract is paralyzed and I rely on a feeding tube for nutrition. Because of this I miss out on eating a lot of fun foods with my friends and family, however I recently tried your sugar-free Glee Gum. I’m allergic to aspartame and so I normally can’t chew gum. Your gum was absolutely amazing though and definitely fulfilled the craving for wanting something sweet or wanting to eat something by mouth. So I just wanted to thank your company for all the hard work you do and for creating such a wonderful product! I now don’t feel so left out. I will definitely continue buying from your company!”

Ellie’s condition is called gastroparesis, and it sounds incredibly challenging. But Ellie has a great spirit! She had been hospitalized for two weeks when she snapped this cheerful picture and sent it our way. She also sent us a movie recommendation: “Frozen”! Ellie can quote the whole film. We look forward to taking her advice and giving it a look-see this weekend. We’ll be thinking of her when we do!

If you would like to be considered as our next “Featured Fan”—and win a case of Glee Gum for the honor— simply send an email introducing yourself to our mascot, gleeguy@gleegum.com

A Challenge to Choose Health

It’s one month into the new year. Are all your resolutions out the window already? Fret not, gum chums! Our friends at Naturally Savvy can get you back on track—and completely change the way you look at food, too!

NSscary-splash2Each one of Naturally Savvy’s Get Healthy Challenges explains why you should avoid (or include) specific ingredients in your diet. It also provides practical advice to help you make healthier choices at the grocery store. With fun videos guiding your journey, all of these informative and interactive challenges are a great way to get (and stay!) healthy.

Plus, when you sign up for one of Naturally Savvy’s challenges, you’ll have access to money-saving coupons and the chance to receive free samples of organic and non-GMO products… maybe even some Glee Gum! Learn more and sign up here.

NSchallenges-lg

Sprouting Up All Over!

Good news for gum chewers.

Glee Gum is now available at Sprouts Farmers Market stores! This healthy grocery store chain started with a single location in Chandler, AZ back in 2002. Now it boasts 190 locations spanning ten states. And, they’ve all got Glee!

Sprouts stores offer fresh, natural, and organic food at great prices– AKA, our favorite things. And they take pride in having “a passion for produce and a devotion to deals.” These are values we at Glee can stand behind! Speaking of which, here is Glee– not so much standing as lining the shelves– at Sprouts stores in Tustin and Westlake Village, CA this month.

Glee Gum at Sprouts Tustin on Holt Ave

Glee Gum at Sprouts Westlake Village

It looks right at home, doesn’t it? Learn more, find a store near you, or connect with Sprouts on Facebook and Twitter. And of course, be sure to get some gum there the next time you visit! With resealable Glee Gum pouches in the candy aisle and four flavors of Glee Gum boxes at the front end, Sprouts makes it easier than ever to chew with Glee, naturally. Thanks, Sprouts!

 

 

A Surprise to Make You Smile

Chums!

As supplies last, we’re including a bonus treat in all our mail orders shipped this month:

A cranberry floss sachet from our friends at RADIUS!

Made with natural xylitol (the same sweetener used in Sugar-Free Glee Gum), this handy, dandy packet of floss is the perfect size to slip in your wallet or pocket and have at the ready. Broccoli, beware! Plus, it’s 100% vegan.

And, guess what!

As supplies last, RADIUS is including a free sample of Mini Glee Gum in their mail orders! How sweet is that?

Check out RADIUS online, and be sure follow the company on Facebook and Twitter, too. We sure do! Thanks, and happy holidays to you!

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Gleeful, Last Minute Gift Ideas

Gleeful Gift Ideas

Tis the season for giving—but also for stressing. Save yourself time and trouble by getting Gleeful gifts for everyone on your list!

Make Your Own Candy Kits are perennial hits with the young and the young at heart. Who wouldn’t want to make dark chocolate, sour gummies, and sweet chewing gum, right at home? P.S. Did you see our Make Your Own Gummies Kit featured in the Dec. 8 issue of Us Weekly Magazine? (Page 68, for those who would like to join us in gazing adoringly at it. It looks like a shining star.)

And fresh breath is the gift that keeps on giving. There’s nothing like Glee Gum before a long flight or after a garlicky bite! Throw in stocking stuffers like Sweet Stacks and Mini Glee Gum, and fun extras like jigsaw puzzles and gum dispensers. You could be the Hanukkah hero or the new St. Nick!

But, don’t just stop at our site and store locator. We’ve got more ideas for you!

The fine folks at TwirlyGirl offer swell suggestions in their post “From Boutique Girls Dresses to Chewing Gum: 41 Great Gift Ideas for Kids.” Highlights: teepee play tents and Triceratops socks. We want both!

And, the Joyful Organizer posted a sweet li’l stocking stuffer guide that includes our favorite reusable bottles, RADIUS toothbrushes, and a Glee Gum discount!

Then there are the bloggers of From Dates to Diapers, who call their holiday gift guide “A Few of Our Favorite Things.” It’s got way more than a few. Expect a LOT of inspiration!

Good luck and happy holiday shopping, chums. You’ve got this in the bag!