ingredient costs

/Tag:ingredient costs

Update on Keto Chow 2.0 – another delay, but there’s hope!

To recap for those who don’t live and breathe this stuff:

  • I’m in the final stages of having Keto Chow produced at a contract manufacturer.
  • Keto Chow 2.0 differs from Keto Chow 1.9 on the protein/flavor/sweetener – I’m not able to get Dymatize Elite in 500KG batches so by necessity we have to get our own stuff to replace it. The most obvious difference will be the flavoring in KC2.0 will be our own stuff.

Anyhow, we ran into a problem with the manufacturing. I had the co-packer make me some new test batches and the flavors came back really weird. Initially, I thought it was the potassium chloride we added but after extensive testing, it turned out to be a problem in the protein powder. The initial tests they did were with a random equivalent protein powder and the new samples were straight from the bulk powder they purchased for our batches. We’ve gone back and tried some different flavoring and some bitter masking agents but to no avail.

I’m not going to sell a product I don’t love. It has to have a “wow, that was really good, I want more!” going for it or it’s not going to be released.

So, as of today, we’re going to use a different protein powder from a different manufacturer. It’s likely this will add some to the cost, I’m hoping it’s less than $1-2 and we’re still aiming to have KC2.0 cost less than KC1.9. This means that Keto Chow 2.0 is going to be delayed. If we can find a direct drop-in replacement for the protein powder it may be as little as a week before we get things going.

We’re coming up on almost a year since I decided to start this endeavor – I hope we can be shipping 2.0 well before Fed 15th.


Update!

This morning we headed down to the manufacturer to work on the problem. We brought along a Keto Chow 1.9 rich chocolate in powder form, a bag of Dymatize Rich Chocolate for comparison, and a blender bottle of mixed Chocolate Peanut Butter. He had complained that it didn’t taste very good and he didn’t feel confident evaluating the mixes so when he had the Chocolate Peanut Butter (with the heavy cream) he was astonished in the extreme “Oh wow, that’s actually really good” – yep that’s the goal! We did a bunch of various tests combining different stuff together but the most telling test was when we tasted the plain whey protein in water… and the bad taste was there! After that, he said he was going to go back to the distributor and get a refund and/or exchange it for a different protein. He said the protein guys may send out a food scientist to work on the problem but ideally, we may have a solution (maybe) quickly.

Day 095 – 100 days of Keto (Chow)

This entry is part 78 of 81 in the series 100 days of keto
  • Weight: 206.0
  • Blood ketones: 0.2 mmol/L

Had an awesome time at the IFT Food Suppliers trade show yesterday. Met some great people and might have found some new suppliers for ingredients. It was funny to see some of the places I’m getting some of my current ingredients from too. I happened upon one supplier that does fiber and asked if they have psyllium husk powder. They don’t but the guy asked what I was using it for, I gave a quick explanation to which he responded “wait, you’re doing Keto? so am I!” We had a rousing conversation that went all over the place but the end result was I’m going to be getting a sample shipment of their acacia gum fiber and their thickener to test in Keto Chow. Allegedly it’s a far better source of fiber than psyllium so I’m anxious to try it out. We’ll see!

By | 2016-04-08T14:42:54+00:00 April 8th, 2016|Categories: 100 days of keto, Keto Chow|Tags: , , , |1 Comment

Day 094 – 100 days of Keto (Chow)

This entry is part 77 of 81 in the series 100 days of keto
  • Weight: 204.8
  • Blood ketones: 0.2 mmol/L

Yesterday I only did two keto chow shakes – we got a new waffle maker and my wife made keto waffles, figured we might as well go all-in on “breakfast for dinner” so I cooked a bunch of bacon and sausage. Also yesterday I got some preliminary figures for the costs of the protein for keto Chow 2.0. In the early stages I had asked for a blend of Whey Protein Concentrate, Whey Protein isolate and Casein Protein (milk). Casein has some advantages in that it’s slower to absorb which can keep you feeling full longer, it’s also beneficial for weight lifting with a higher glutamine content. The problem is: it’s three times the cost of concentrate, it also adds an additional allergy possibility. From the looks of things we’re going to be using a blend of whey isolate and concentrate that is very similar to the Dymatize and I’ll probably add a recommendation that anyone doing body building use casein to supplement the protein in the Keto Chow (which is likely going to be just a touch higher than the current recipe).

This evening I’m going to check out the IFT Food Suppliers event, with any luck I might be able to find some additional industry leads for production/packaging or ingredients. Only problem: I’ll have to do it quick because weigh-in for the Pinewood Derby is at 6:30 and I don’t want to miss the event!

By | 2016-04-08T13:47:01+00:00 April 7th, 2016|Categories: 100 days of keto, Keto Chow|Tags: , , , , |0 Comments

Dymatize Protein and availability woes

The photo is about half of the Peanut Butter packages we mixed last night, waiting to be sealed. I decided it looked kinda cool so I took a picture, they last longer.

Something that I’ve been concerned about lately is the availability of the various flavors of Dymatize (which is a central component of Keto Chow – it’s what sets the flavor). My preferred supplier is out of stock on all the 10lb boxes and most of the 5lb bottles. My secondary, tertiary and other suppliers are also pretty much completely out of stock. My guess is it has to do with Dymatize closing its Texas production plant and contracting with “co-packer” facilities and they’re not coming on-line as quickly as they would like.

I’ve had 2 flavors go out of stock now: Strawberry (update: it’s back in stock) and Mocha (completely out of stock except day packages). I’m still looking to find some place that has either of these but it’s not looking very good with most places reporting they should have some stock in about 10 days. Rich Chocolate has been particularly fun to maintain stock since it’s what I use for Chocolate Peanut Butter as well as the regular Rich Chocolate, the 3rd and 1st most popular flavors (#2 is vanilla). I’ve taken to buying out the inventory of any place I can find 10lb or 5lb containers. Last night I had a friend helping me get some Keto Chow mixed up. If I remember correctly, we mixed 220lbs of Rich Chocolate (half was for peanut butter), 80lbs of Vanilla, 30lbs of Cookies and Cream. With any luck that will be enough to hold us over past Thanksgiving but I’m suspecting it won’t.

 

By | 2015-11-20T18:41:57+00:00 November 13th, 2015|Categories: Keto Chow, Site or Store Stuff|Tags: , , |0 Comments

Couple of changes to the recipe for Keto Chow in testing

This entry is part 84 of 185 in the series Ketogenic Soylent

I finally got around to grinding up the multi-vitamin into a powder and seeing if it affected the taste of Keto Chow – it doesn’t. As soon as I can switch over my production pipeline I’m going to start incorporating it into the mix. There will likely be a transition period for a few weeks where the more popular flavors (I’m looking at you: Rich Chocolate) get swapped over almost immediately and the more exotic flavors are switched slower. I’m planning on putting a sticker on the updated ones, something along the lines of “No more vitamin pill, it’s in the mix!”. This will make things easier for everyone and I’ll stop forgetting to include the vitamins when I ship out a week. It will also null the questions about using a different vitamin which really wasn’t a good idea anyway.

I’m investigating adding Magnesium Glycinate (2g/day) to the mixture to raise the levels of magnesium. I recently got a really fun muscle cramp in my leg and while researching the cause and remedy I discovered that I probably need more magnesium. Keto Chow already has 555mg of magnesium (132% RDI) per day but some digging shows that on a ketogenic diet you probably need 300mg over the RDI. This change brings the total in Keto Chow above 900mg a day. I did a fair amount of research into the different forms of Magnesium. I could have added more magnesium citrate but the citric acid can act as a laxative. I ended up with wanting to go with either Magnesium Malate or Glycinate – both are highly bio-available and without the issues of some of the other forms of magnesium. I would have preferred the Malate but it was difficult to get in bulk powder form, whereas I can get the Glycinate in big bulk packages (and it also comes in smaller packages too).

So I’m currently testing both changes together: powdered vitamin and additional magnesium. I’m also testing a third change, this time to the fish oil. The stuff I usually take requires 5 fish oil pills, There’s a slightly more expensive one that I only need 2 per day. It also has an “enteric coating” that makes you not burp up fish taste. Taking the two is a bit easier. If all goes well in the test I’ll switch over the fish oil pills I sell from 35 for a week to 14 for a week. I’ll have to take new product pictures.

By | 2015-08-17T09:40:21+00:00 August 17th, 2015|Categories: Keto Chow, Soylent|Tags: , , , , |16 Comments

Coconut Cream as a possible substitute for heavy cream in Keto Chow

This entry is part 71 of 185 in the series Ketogenic Soylent

A comment on another post asked about the feasibility of using coconut cream for Keto Chow.

It just might work.

I looked into “Trader Joe’s Coconut Cream”:

coconut-cream-facts

I calculated for 250ml of this Coconut Cream for a target kCal/day of 1300 (same as 50ml of heavy cream. It ups the NET carbs from 12g to 20g/day which isn’t optimal but should work fine. It is significantly more expensive though, the 250ml costs around $3.50 a day, compared to $0.75 for the same amount of calories from heavy cream. I also don’t have figures for the Omega 3 and 6 content so those end up red on the recipe editor.

Still, I’m going to grab some and give it a try, see how it goes. For those that can’t handle heavy cream, this might be a viable option. Update: here are the results.

Bodybuilding.com vs. AllStarHealth.com – protein price comparison

I like ordering from BodyBuilding.com because they get stuff to me the next day. I started using Allstarhealth.com for Psyllium Husk powder and the Cal/Mag/D3 powder but I wanted to see how the price compares between Bodybuildng and AllstarHealth; who ships from California to Utah in 2 days (still pretty good).

I put together a test order on both sites for two 2-lb tubs and two 10-lb boxes. Here’s how it broke down:

Bodybuilding.com AllstarHealth.com
Subtotal $225.88 $210.76
Coupon $22.59 $0
Shipping $12.98 $5.95
Tax $0 $0
Total $216.27 $216.71

So, the initial price is a bit higher on bodybuilding.com compared to Allstarhealth.com BUT there’s a 10% off coupon that is always up to date on this page that brings the price down. Note about that coupon: it changes once a month and you can only use the code once (until the next time it changes, next month)… unless you order using “incognito mode” and checkout as a guest. So for now I’m going to stick with Bodybuilding.com – it’s a day quicker and costs just a teeny, tiny bit less.

By | 2016-10-14T07:18:02+00:00 April 9th, 2015|Categories: Site or Store Stuff|Tags: , |0 Comments

Going to try mixing PB2 into the powder tonight, Calcium Phosphate changes

This entry is part 45 of 185 in the series Ketogenic Soylent

I cloned my Keto Chow Recipe and added PB2 to it so I could get actual numbers instead of hoping I was good with a calculator. I also put the specific nutrition info for the Rich Chocolate flavored protein powder since the different flavors have slightly different values. What I came up with looks really good.

Adding three 12g servings of PB2 a day adds an additional $0.81 per day. Coupled with the correct figures for the Rich Chocolate it appears to have 47g of carbs, 26g of dietary fiber giving 21g net carbs. That’s 9 more than PB2-less Keto Chow but still well under the 30g net carbs I’m targeting to maintain ketosis and continue my weight loss.

Tonight I’m going to try mixing PB2 into a week’s worth of Rich Chocolate to see if it mixes well or not and if it fouls my mixing container with the oils and such in the PB2. Should be interesting. My hope is that by mixing it into the powder I’ll get a better mixture. Currently when I mix up my Keto Chow I’m getting some slight lumpiness (isolated only to the peanut butter) since the PB2 turns into creamy peanut butter immediately on contact with water. By having the PB2 evenly distributed throughout the powder it should clump less. Again, the clumps aren’t really a bad thing but it would be nice to have it even smoother still.

Lastly: in version 1.0.1 I changed the “Freeda” Calcium Phosphate for DiCalcium Phosphate that I could source from BulkSupplements in giant bags. Well, about the same time I noticed a tiny amount of grit in my Keto Chow. It was only apparent if you chewed a bit on the liquid but I could detect the granules of something. I didn’t make the connection to the DiCalcium Phosphate until about a week ago when I decided to throw caution to the wind tasted a pinch of the Dicalcium Phosphate. Yep, finally found the source of the grit. I finally got the original Calcium Phosphate in yesterday and will start mixing with it again tonight.

By | 2015-03-18T09:26:55+00:00 March 18th, 2015|Categories: Keto Chow, Ketogenic, Soylent|Tags: , , , |5 Comments

Keto Photo Friday: 4 months, 37 lbs – got a long way to go still =)

This entry is part 41 of 185 in the series Ketogenic Soylent

I posted this to /r/keto last week, decided it might be nice to have it here too. I started “Obese” (>30 BMI) now I’m just “Overweight”.

First time posting progress pics. I was going to wait longer but I was just at a conference where they were doing headshots. I had a similar one taken right before I started keto. Time for a comparison.

Here you have before and after. 4 months, 37 lbs. Oddly enough, both were taken at SalesForce conferences.

Here you have before and after. 4 months, 37 lbs. Oddly enough, both were taken at SalesForce conferences.

2000-05 Wedding - According to my wife I weighed 220 when we were married 15 years ago.

2000-05 Wedding – According to my wife I weighed 220 when we were married 15 years ago.

2006-10 - In 2006 I started keeping track (mostly daily) of my weight, this picture is very close to when I weighed 276. I later lost quite a lot of weight doing the "Shangri-La" diet and then again lost more doing something similar to "Whole 30".

2006-10 – In 2006 I started keeping track (mostly daily) of my weight, this picture is very close to when I weighed 276. I later lost quite a lot of weight doing the “Shangri-La” diet and then again lost more doing something similar to “Whole 30”.

Here's my complete weight log from October 2006 until February 2015 (excepting the year or so I stopped keeping track in 2009)

Here’s my complete weight log from October 2006 until February 2015 (excepting the year or so I stopped keeping track in 2009)

2014-10-13 Dreamforce - This was just before I started keto. I weighed 258.

2014-10-13 Dreamforce – This was just before I started keto. I weighed 258.

2014-10-13 - Also at Dreamforce. This is mostly just for fun.

2014-10-13 – Also at Dreamforce. This is mostly just for fun.

2014-10-25 - This was taken 4 days after I started Keto. I was already down 8lbs. My wife looks awesome.

2014-10-25 – This was taken 4 days after I started Keto. I was already down 8lbs. My wife looks awesome.

The spike in January is when I ate carbs for a week in preparation for a weight loss contest. Gotta level the playing field!

The spike in January is when I ate carbs for a week in preparation for a weight loss contest. Gotta level the playing field!

2015-02-20 - 4 months and 37 lbs. I was down to 220.5. It's awfully close to how much I weighed when I got married plus it's almost exactly 100kg.

2015-02-20 – 4 months and 37 lbs. I was down to 220.5. It’s awfully close to how much I weighed when I got married plus it’s almost exactly 100kg.

2015-02-26 - Hey, every one of these has to have a selfie right? Yes I wear a tie to work every day. Yes that's a Napoleon Dynamite figurine, it talks.

2015-02-26 – Hey, every one of these has to have a selfie right? Yes I wear a tie to work every day. Yes that’s a Napoleon Dynamite figurine, it talks.

By | 2016-10-14T07:18:04+00:00 March 3rd, 2015|Categories: Keto Chow, Ketogenic, Soylent, Weight Loss|Tags: , , , , , |0 Comments

Powdered Cream not suitable for Keto soylent

This entry is part 29 of 185 in the series Ketogenic Soylent

I guess I’m supposed to do clickbait titles if I want more traffic, but I prefer to get the conclusion out there and then back it up in the body.

A question came up about how well powdered cream could be used for Keto Chow instead of the liquid heavy cream. The Amazon Page doesn’t show any nutrition information and I couldn’t get a response from the manufacturer… so logically I bought some.

Here’s the nutrition information. Pay attention to the grams of fat + grams of protein + grams of carbohydrates != serving size.

Powdered Cream Rear LabelOK, so the math doesn’t add up. Besides that I can work with the calories and carbohydrate numbers to see how many carbs would be in the same calorie amount as liquid heavy cream. For reference, here’s the nutrition for Darigold 40% cream:

40 percent heavy cream nutrition info

0 carbs, none. Granted, in the US you can call anything below 1g 0 but I’m inclined to believe the 0 figure. So let’s do math. To equal the 518 calories in the heavy cream we’re going to need 58 servings (maybe 4g, maybe 7g going by my math) of the powder. That will give us 29g of carbohydrates (specifically sugars thanks to the #1 ingredient “sweet cream”) that aren’t there when using heavy cream. That would bring your daily net carbs up from 10.9 to 39.9. Did I mention that it will cost you $2.30/day for the powdered cream vs $0.75 for the liquid.

So yeah, not suitable. I looked into another powdered cream and found the same conclusion.

Powdered Cream Front and Side labels

 

By | 2016-11-01T15:36:21+00:00 January 15th, 2015|Categories: Keto Chow, Ketogenic, Soylent|Tags: , , |10 Comments