Zellee Organic tropical Hawaiian leaves

this is our story

Our story starts with Kimiko, our founder Eriko’s Mom, who began making plant-based versions of Japanese gelatin desserts using locally sourced, organic, natural, non-GMO ingredients way before using locally sourced, organic, natural, non-GMO ingredients was even a thing people did. She was doing this during the processed foods revolution when people thought microwave TV dinners were a new superfood. Kimiko was what business books like to call smart people, “ahead of her time.”

Eriko then carried on the tradition for her own children. They loved the jels so much they wanted her to start a business. And so Eriko created Zellee Organic. But soon she realized she needed help to accomplish her dream of sharing Zellee with the world. So, she partnered with her long-time friend, Lisa, and today they are making her dream a reality.

what we stand for

our ingredients

With our hand-selected, organic, all-natural, plant-based ingredients, we’re reinventing gelatin snacks to be naturally delicious and fruitfully fun. You won’t find any GMOs, added sugar, preservatives, food dyes, artificial flavors, or animal byproducts in these pouches. And, since our jels are free from all of the 8 major food allergens, we proudly partner with SnackSafely.com. 

our planet

As beach lovers and planet huggers, we embrace our responsibility to protect the environment. Through our partnerships with 1% for the Planet we participate in conservation initiatives that help to keep our planet healthy, happy, and trash-free. 

Zellee Organic is great for surfing, hanging at the beach, and family time on any adventure.

our community

At Zellee, we’re passionate about ending food insecurity and hunger in our community. And, when we think about our community, we don’t just think about the perfectly blissful (and surfable) Hawaiian Islands; we think about the greater United States and beyond.

Through our partnership with Feeding America, we donate tens of thousands of pouches to various food banks throughout the country each year. We’re also proud partners of the Whole Plant Foundation, whose mission is to alleviate poverty in the poorest parts of the world.

  • Zellee Organic donates to Feeding America.
  • Zellee Organic is a proud partner of the Whole Planet Foundation by Whole Foods.

one for the history books

1976

Eriko’s mom, Kimiko sets out to create a plant-based version of Japanese gelatin desserts. As an early proponent of healthy eating, she makes sure all her ingredients are natural, organic, non-GMO and locally sourced. What a visionary!

1995

It was BFFs at first sight. After college, Eriko and Lisa’s paths cross in NYC, and they instantly become friends. Was it their shared love of fruit jels? Keep reading to find out.

2001-2007

Eriko and Lisa start families and in a span of six years have seven babies. These supermoms were not letting their kids eat any icky, toxic foods. So, they develop an obsession with organic, healthy snacks.

2013

Eriko’s daughter is diagnosed with food allergies...and Eriko becomes a fanatical label reader. Trust us, if there was an Olympics for label reading, she would take the gold.

One summer at the beach, Eriko dozes off and dreams about her mom’s fruit jels. She wakes up inspired and compelled to recreate these fantastical snacks.  Eriko shares her creations with all her friends and family. No allergens = No one’s excluded.

2015

The year of experiments. Eriko and food scientist extraordinaire, Rachel, make endless batches of fruit jels, and Lisa becomes the official taste tester. Eriko’s kids name their favorite snack food “Zellee,” which is the Japanese version of the English word "jelly."

2016

Zellee starts selling to stores on Maui and is introduced at ExpoWest –  the largest natural product show out there. Zellee is selected as one of three finalists for the NEXTY’s Best New Kids Product Award.

Lisa finds her true calling…sales…and Zellee’s future is in good hands.  By the end of the year, her sales magic brings us across the ocean and into the California market. 

Zellee Organic tropical hibiscus flower

2017-2018

Zellee continues to grow in California and beyond. Some notable highlights:

  • Zellee hits Amazon and Thrive Market. Who doesn't love online shopping? 
  • The military commissaries in Hawaii start carrying Zellee. We salute that!
  • Zellee sails the Pacific…to Asia!

Zellee also gets a makeover…same yummy inside, new and improved outside.

2019

Who runs the world? Zellee Organic becomes certified as a Women-Owned Business. Zellee has always been women-owned, but now we have a piece of paper saying so. Speaking of paper, Zellee is presented with another piece of paper and an award in Hong Kong. Winner of "Best Food" at the Natural & Organic Asia Show!

2020

The pandemic doesn't stop our pouches from going places. Zellee expands to the Midwest and Texas, spreading aloha to more parts of the country. Zellee also goes on a donation spree and gives away pouches by the pallet to food banks across the U.S.


Zellee introduces the Sports Jel! Doing our part to keep everyone fit and healthy.

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