What Happened To Back 9 Chicken Dips From Shark Tank?

We all love Buffalo wings, but what if you took this fan-favorite food and turned it into a dip? Whoa... mind blown. That's the idea David and Nique Mealey brought to fruition when running their catering business called Back 9 in Florida in the early 2010s. Customers loved the dips so much, the couple decided to package and sell it in grocery stores — including Florida giant Publix — with the celebrity backing of Bubba the Love Sponge, a popular (and controversial) radio host in the Tampa area (via Shark Tank Blog).

When the Mealeys appeared on "Shark Tank" Season 4 in 2013, David told the Sharks the dips were made by "tak[ing] all white meat chicken breasts, your wing sauces, [and] dipping sauces, blend[ing] them together, creating everything you get in a chicken wing on a chip" (via YouTube). David and Nique ask for $150,000 for 15% equity in their company, aptly named Back 9 Chicken Dips. 

Did the Sharks chicken out?

On the show, Nique Mealey passes out samples of Back 9 Chicken Dips to the Sharks. She shares that oftentimes when samples of the dips are given out in supermarkets and grocery stores, samplers quickly turn into customers. Daymond calls the product a "chicken Slurpee," which the Sharks have some chuckles about, but David Mealey has the last laugh when he shares that the company has done $400,000 in sales over the past two years. Now here's where things get interesting.

Initially, Lori, Mark, Kevin, and Robert are all out, but Daymond hangs on. Lori changes her mind and counters the Mealeys' request with an offer of $150,000 for 25% equity. Daymond gets emotional about the Mealeys' family situation — they have one child and another on the way — but ultimately opts out. However, things aren't quite over yet. Robert reenters the arena and he and Lori make a joint deal with the Mealeys. Phew! It certainly was one wild ride.

Did Back 9 Chicken Dips sizzle or fizzle?

After the "Shark Tank" episode aired, Back 9 Chicken Dips's website crashed after receiving a record numbers of orders. The company expanded its reach from being featured in 400 stores in one state to 1,400 stores in multiple states. Eventually, the chicken dips were available nationwide in major stores at Costco. Things were looking good for the Mealeys!

Unfortunately, good things don't always last, and such was the case for the Back 9 Chicken Dips business. In 2014, the USDA found that there were anchovies in the dip, which were not listed in the ingredients list on the packaging and therefore an undisclosed allergen. The company was forced to recall 12,000 pounds of dip, and it seems as if Back 9 Chicken Dips never recovered from the blow. The last post on the company's Twitter account was in April 2014 and it appears as if the business's website has been taken down. Per LinkedIn, Nique is now a sales and marketing specialist and David works in sales for a cigar company.