About

The Simple Root is an
exciting, delicious & innovative
Global Plant-Based Brand,
MADE WITH VEGETABLES!

We make eating your veg
exciting & easy by crafting simple,
yet gratifyingly good veggie-based foods.

 

Our Process

Bringing innovation to plant-based, The Simple Root uses an innovative technique which transforms potatoes and other root vegetables into a naturally creamy base, that is then simply blended with more vegetables, fruit, herbs and spices. Our products are made with 30% - 60% vegetables and fruits with other plant-based ingredients like herbs and spices. Our simply better vegetable ingredients have less environmental impact (less water usage, less gas emissions) than products made with animal and dairy ingredients, and soy and nut ingredients (often used in plant-based foods).

Global Brand

The Simple Root team is made up of professionals experienced in creating and marketing successful food brands. The Simple Root is a start-up brand with global presence and has been launched in the UK and the US in 2022. Ingredients are sourced regionally for each location, and products are thoughtfully crafted for the tastes of each geography.

www.simpleroot.co.uk

  

Our Story

Harnessing the power of root vegetables & veggies

Root vegetables, including potatoes, have a rich history as humble ingredients - yet they deliver so much more than the eye can see. Historians credit the arrival of potato in northern Europe with ending famine in the region. Today, potatoes are a mainstay in diets around the globe, a crowd favorite for their accessibility, price point, and versatile (and tasty) uses (and reliable supply chain).


But what if the entire family of root vegetables–can give us even more? What if the appealing flavors and amazing nutritional benefits of carrots, parsnips, beets, onions, a range of potato varieties (and more!) can be transformed into a unique creamy base for new products– that we then gently combine with more veggies, fruits, herbs and spices too, creating delicious plant-based products (with amazing tastes and textures) that turn what we know about vegetables on its head? That’s what we’ve done– to give you even more ways to love your veggies.

It's Simple: Food Made From Plants!

The Simple Root, Certified Plant Based

No animal-derived ingredients

The Simple Root is proud to be recognized as Certified Plant Based, by the Plant Based Foods Association. The Plant Based Foods Association defines plant-based as ‘foods made from plants that contain no animal derived ingredients’. Look for the Certified Plant Based symbol to make confident decisions when choosing The Simple Root, and other plant-based foods.


Currently, only an estimated 1,100 products in the U.S. are Certified Plant based, following the rigorous standards established by the Plant Based Foods Association.


The Simple Root is veggie packed, simply made and certified plant-based so it’s an easy choice to add more veggies and plant-based foods to your diet!

Our Team

David A. Behringer

Global CEO
The Simple Root Company, Inc.

Dave is an award-winning R&D and venture leader with a 25-year track record in food and beverage technology innovation for large corporates and startups. During his two decades at Kraft Foods, Dave helped launch multiple $100M products, including the ‘Back to Nature’ brand and the ‘South Beach Diet’ line. As CTO of 915 Labs, he was an integral member of the leadership team behind the international food tech start-up. In 2016, he became CEO of Pilot Lite Ventures USA, leading the firm’s North American venture management team. The Simple Root grew out of a collaboration between Pilot Lite and the Fortune 500, multinational McCain Foods. 

Dave is a certified personal chef, holds a Bachelor of Chemical Engineering from Pennsylvania State University, and has completed postgraduate innovation programs at the University of Michigan, Stephen M Ross School of Business, and Kellogg School of Management at Northwestern University.

David 's Fun Food Fact

Dave grows his own Caribbean red-hot peppers every year to make and bottle a West Indian Style hot sauce.  The secret Dominican recipe passed down to him from his wife’s mother is always in demand from family and friends post-harvest in the fall when the annual batch of hot sauce is produced and bottled.

Leslie Maclin

Global Chief Marketing Officer
The Simple Root Company, Inc.

Leslie leads brand stewardship, insight and innovation across the UK, US, and Canada for The Simple Root. She also serves as the marketing lead for the North American business including portfolio and pipeline management, food design briefs, packaging communication and creative, and customer and channel marketing.


Leslie is a senior food industry innovation leader collaborating with global & challenger brands to design disruptive new food brands and businesses. She specializes in leveraging investment-stage emerging food and packaging technology and the adaptation of capitalized legacy technology to generate business growth.


She has led innovation initiatives for clients including Sargento, Molson-Coors, Kraft-Heinz, Corteva, ConAgra, Ocean Spray, Domino’s Pizza, Hormel Foods, Simplot, The American Egg Board, ARAMARK and more. She previously served in senior leadership roles at Kellogg’s, where she led the innovation & insights team for the $1.5B Omni-channel division, commercializing 100+ new products and integrating key acquisitions, including Kashi and Morningstar Farms. She received a Bachelor of Arts from the University of Kentucky and has completed professional development programs at the University of Chicago, American Marketing Association, Chicagoland Food & Beverage Network, the Culinary Institute of America, and Chicago Ideas Week.

Leslie's Fun Food Fact

Growing up on a 2000-acre farm in Central Kentucky, Leslie has always loved vegetables—her favorite is carrots! Leslie was the 4H Foods Champion at the Fayette County Kentucky Fair for her homegrown vegetable cornucopia.

Lora N. SPIZZIRRI

CHIEF TECHNOLOGY OFFICER
The Simple Root Company, Inc.

Lora directs global technology development at The Simple Root and leads R&D, quality, operations, and supply chain for North America.


Lora is a Research and Development executive with over 30 years of experience in the Food and Beverage industry. She spent 25 years at Kraft Foods, where she held diverse leadership positions across multiple $100M brands. Lora led a successful renovation of Kraft’s iconic Philadelphia Cream Cheese product line, including reformulation, packaging redesign, and shelf display. Before joining The Simple Root, she was the Vice President of Research, Development, and Engineering for 915 Labs, a food technology startup. Lora is a graduate of Rochester Institute of Technology with a Bachelor of Science in Packaging Engineering.

Lora's Fun Food Fact

Growing up in an Italian family, food was the center of our lives. With a father who was an officer in the military, being home every day for dinner was non-negotiable. We had our marching orders! Veggies, in the form of salads, were a large part of our diet. But we were not allowed to eat the salad before the main course, only after. “It’s good for digestion!”, he would say. Keeping our food traditions alive is not easy but one thing continues to hold true, fresh, real ingredients make food better tasting and better for you.

Nigel Kirtley

Technology Principal
The Simple Root Company, Inc.

Nigel serves on the technology team, specializing in developing technical solutions and
 IP creation.


Nigel is a 30-plus-year veteran of the international food industry. During his multi-decade career at Kraft Foods, he served as vice president of research and supplier integration, managing all corporate research programs and central services and working closely with suppliers and external research groups to create the company’s innovation pipeline. He also served as vice president of R&D and quality for Kraft’s iconic Cheese and Dairy Division.


Nigel’s career has taken him from his home country the UK to Germany, Switzerland, Belgium, and the USA. He has worked in R&D, Operations, and Business Development across a wide range of product categories and countries. He holds a Bachelor of Science degree in biochemistry and master’s degrees in both engineering and business.

Tischa Inniss

Product Development Manager
The Simple Root Company, Inc.

Tischa leads product and packaging development, nutrition and regulatory for The Simple Root brand.


Tischa is a research and development professional with more than 20 years of experience in project management, leading large teams and programs from concept to commercialization. Tischa is an expert in product formulation and physical packaging development.  In 2020, she leveraged her product development expertise and passion for innovation and launched a fragrance brand.  Now, she is proud to have a leadership role in bringing The Simple Root brand to life.

Tischa's Fun Food Fact

As a Caribbean-American, Tischa grew up in a home where food represented love.  Her favorite foods are tailored around West Indian / Caribbean cuisines.  She loves to cook with various vegetables but continues to gravitate towards kale – one of her ‘go-to’ favorites!  Not only is kale a good source of vitamins and minerals, but it is super versatile, like her!

Ray Laudano

Product Development Manager
The Simple Root Company, Inc.

Ray is the North American Product Development Manager specializing in creating unique flavor varieties across The Simple Root’s product lines.


Ray is a food, beverage, and pharmaceutical industry professional with 40-plus years of innovation, ideation, and creative new product development. He holds numerous domestic and international patents across multiple categories. Ray has facilitated innovation and strategic growth sessions for new product and new category development. Prior to his consulting career, Ray spent 37 years with General Foods and later, Kraft Foods, where he was a senior research scientist. He earned a Bachelor of Food and Nutrition from Montclair State University and has received executive training at IDEO, Synectics, Seeds of Innovation, and other creative problem-solving institutions.

Ray's Fun Food Fact

Ray spent part of one summer working as a commercial fisherman aboard the ‘Orca’ out of the MacMillan Wharf in Provincetown, MA. And while not a vegan, Ray fully embraces the ‘green wave’ of sustainability that comes from sourcing proteins and other vital nutrients from vegetables and grains to promote healthier lifestyles and a healthier planet. Ray and his wife operate a small citrus grove in Arizona.

Susan Bodett

Supply Chain and Logistics Manager
The Simple Root Company, Inc.

Susan is our de facto ‘Chief of Staff’ at The Simple Root (TSR), managing administrative and operational activities across both internal and external partners. She serves as a key point of contact for TSR and its stakeholders.


Susan has more than 30 years of food industry experience, including a 24-year career at Kraft Foods, where she conducted basic flavor research, technology development, and packaging innovation. An early adopter of Open Innovation approaches, Susan has significant experience in technology scouting, research collaborations, and supplier collaborations and integration. For Pilot Lite Ventures USA, Susan has worked on venture management projects for McCain Foods, Coca-Cola, and Johnsonville. Susan has a Bachelor of Applied Science degree in environmental science from Northwestern University.

Susan's Fun Food Fact

I am blown away by the balance of flavor, color, and dip-ability of Sweet & Spicy Mango Sweet Potato Dip. It is exactly what it says it is. Mango has risen on my list of favorite fruits.