Eat & Drink

Size Matters

Remaking the humble sunflower seed.

July 2013

Sunflower seeds are one of nature’s original snack foods. Ten years ago, however, Justin Havlick, the president and founder of Boulder’s Bigs Sunflower Seeds, had a simple thought: The nibbles needed a makeover. So he assembled a group of confidants and charged them with the mission of bringing seeds back to prominence as America’s snack food of choice. The team came up with three overarching ideas: Use big seeds; coat the shells with the distinctive flavors of established brands like Jim Beam and Hidden Valley Original Ranch; and package the seeds in resealable bags. A decade later, Havlick’s big bet has paid off.