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Nov 29, 2022

Andrea Hernandez is one of the most respected influencers in food and beverage, but it’s not a title she covets. She’d rather be called “cult leader.”

A former marketing executive with over a decade of experience in the food industry, Hernandez is the creator of Snaxshot, a multifaceted digital platform that has followed and forecasted some of the most notable trends in the food and beverage industry over the past two years. 

Launched in 2020, Snaxshot’s popular blog and newsletter are known for their well-researched and witty content. Both are ad-free and community-funded, and while Hernandez often highlights brands aligned with her perspective that food and drink should be delicious and uncomplicated, Snaxshot’s independence provides her with a platform to be candid, and, occasionally, controversial.

Over the past two years, Snaxshot has become a valuable and influential resource for entrepreneurs, industry professionals and consumers. Its newsletter has over 35,000 subscribers (affectionately known as “snaxbois”) and Snaxshot and Hernadez combined have tens of thousands of followers on Twitter and Instagram.

In this episode, Hernandez spoke about the emergence of Snaxshot and its content strategy, why she’s uncomfortable with her anointed role as a “trend oracle,” her bone to pick with functional foods and beverages, how she defines “a great product” and her take on several noteworthy trends.

We also sat down for a conversation with legendary musician, actor and entrepreneur Steven Van Zandt, who spoke about the launch of his new wellness brand Little Steven’s Underground Apothecary, which markets natural consumer products designed to alleviate everyday stresses and ailments.

Show notes:

1:00: Andrea Hernandez, Creator, Snaxshot – Hernandez met with Taste Radio editor Ray Latif in the Bowery neighborhood of Manhattan, where she compared the chilly weather of New York City with that of her home base in the Honduras, discussed her non-traditional job title, how Snaxshot acts as a check on the “commodification of wellness,” its readership and how they interact with the platform and why she prepares new content in the style of and old “sitcom variety show.” She also explained her role as an intermediary versus an industry predictor, how she defines an emerging concept and a great brand, why the market is the ultimate validator of trends, the power of great branding and great quality and her aversion to functional ingredients in sweet treats and desserts. Later, she shared her thoughts on better-for-you-sodas and candy, keto products, gut health, non-nutritive sweeteners and plant-based meat.

45:51: Steven Van Zandt, Founder, Little Steven’s Underground Apothecary – Our next guest for this episode is well-known to fans of Hall of Fame artists Bruce Springsteen and The E Street Band as well as the iconic television show “The Sopranos.” Steven Van Zandt is an accomplished musician and actor who recently added entrepreneur to his resume with the launch of Little Steven’s Underground Apothecary, a brand focused on natural and holistic remedies to everyday stresses and ailments. The company markets  boutique teas, coffees, lollipops, and other products infused with organic ingredients, including ginger, turmeric, kava, maca and Manuka honey. The brand donates 10% of all profits to, a non-profit that uses the history of popular music to create engaging, multicultural lesson plans for history, social studies, language arts, music and science classrooms.

Brands in this episode: Liquid Death, Ghia, De Soi, Parch, Three Spirit, Oatly, Prime, Recess, Graza, Little Debbie, Oreo, Dunkaroos, Sundays, Rip Van, Bai, SmartSweets, Impossible Foods, Beyond Meat, Actual Veggies, Nutella, Lay’s, Goldfish, Pop-Tarts, Little Steven’s Underground Apothecary