CK Natural Fruit Juice

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Contributing Writer

Darlene Brace

When Melissa Baideme decided to go into the nursing program, little did she know that her life was going to take an unexpected turn. Her husband and father-in-law owned grape farms, and soon she got the idea for a natural fruit juice business. After trying to juggle nursing with her new business adventure, Melissa decided to quit her nursing program, to pursue the fruit juice business full time. Since leaving nursing and pursuing the new business, Melissa obtained a Food Processing License through New York State, and a HACCP certification through Cornell University, as well as a certification for Women’s Business Enterprise of New York State.

In 2021, Melissa started her business that is called CK Natural Fruit Juice. CK Natural Fruit Juice is the retail sales and small bulk provider of Growers’ Co-op’s Concord, Niagara, and Catawba Grape concentrate as well as the Tart Cherry concentrate. Growers’ Co-op was started in 1929. It now has over 75 grape farmers, with over 3000 acres of grapes. The farmer-members of Growers’ Co-op grow and harvest the grapes. Then the grapes are transported to the Growers Co-Op Processing Facility in Westfield, NY, where the fruits are processed into grape and tart cherry concentrate. The juice is then stored in large bulk tanks. Melissa’s company gets the natural fruit juice concentrate from Growers’ Co-Op. CK Natural Fruit Juice packages and distributes the grape and cherry tart juice concentrates and pie filling. They distribute these products to both local and national businesses, and they can also be found online.

The juice concentrate can be consumed as a beverage by adding water to it. A small amount of concentrate can be mixed with water to make an affordable and healthy beverage. The juices have no additives, fillers, or artificial flavoring. They are gluten and GMO free.

Melissa is also working on a gourmet line of food products, specifically sauces and dressings. The gourmet line will include the Growers’ Co-op Concord grape concentrate as one of the ingredients in the recipe. One of the recipes that CK Natural Fruit Juice is now selling is a Concord Grapeseed Vinaigrette. They also have a chef who is in the process of creating other new products made with the natural fruit juice concentrates.

One of the first reasons Melissa had an interest in this business, is because these products have many health benefits. The Concord grape juice products are good for heart health and blood pressure. Her business also distributes tart cherry concentrate, that is good for people that have gout, arthritis, and can decrease inflammation. It also has natural melatonin in it, that can help people with sleep issues.

Some of the Growers’ Co-op juice products as well as Melissa’s gourmet line salad dressing can be found here locally in stores like Peterson’s Farm, Anderson’s Farm and CHQ Plus in Jamestown. They are also at the Grape Discovery Center in Westfield. The products come in various sizes and prices.

If you want more information about CK Natural Fruit Juice and Growers’ Co-op products, there are several ways. Online you can go to cknaturalfruitjuice.com. You can also contact Melissa at 716-485-3864 or reach her by email at sales@cknaturalfruitjuice.com.