What Happened To Chicken Salt After Shark Tank?

If you've visited Australia, you may have taken a bite of a fast-food fry and wondered why it was so much more flavorful than its American counterpart. That extra flavor comes from chicken salt, which is the default fry seasoning in the land down under, per Epicurious

Chicken salt was invented at a chicken shop in Gawler, South Australia in the 1970s and was used to season, you guessed it, chicken (per Australian Food Timeline). The first recipe contained chicken bouillon to bump up the chicken flavor, but it was later adjusted to be vegetarian and vegan-friendly.

Co-founder of JADA Spices, Khasha Touloei, grew up in Australia and explained on "Shark Tank" that he wanted to bring his childhood favorite seasoning to the United States, but in a healthier way, explains the Shark Tank Blog. He noted that even the vegan versions of the salt were very high in sodium. To solve this problem, he created a line of vegan with his co-founder and engineer, Maynard Okereke. The pair appeared on "Shark Tank" in November 2020 and impressed the Sharks with the flavor of their seasonings.

What the Sharks thought of Chicken Salt

Entrepreneurs Khasha Touloei and Maynard Okereke had an exciting pitch for their line of vegan chicken salts, which included a caveman "evolving" to use their seasoning instead of regular old salt (via YouTube). The flavor of the seasonings lived up to the hype of the presentation, so the sharks were impressed. 

What was even more impressive was that in 2019, the company did $319,000 in sales and projected to jump up to $500,000 in 2020, per Shark Tank Recap. The salt also has impressive margins, costing less than a dollar to produce and selling for between $4.99 and $8.99.

With those impressive numbers behind them, the entrepreneurs entered the tank asking for $250,000 for 20% equity. The sharks were impressed by the flavor of the seasonings and the company's new Plant-Based Chick'n Mix. Lori Greiner was especially impressed by the mix but did not think it was far enough along for her to invest. Barbara Cochran, on the other hand, was raving about the product and said it "tasted just like chicken." She offered $250,000 for 33% equity, and the pair agreed to the deal.

Where are they now?

In 2022, the founders of JADA Brands are leaning more into the Plant-Based Chick'n Mix than the chicken salts. The company's old website, chickensalt.com, now redirects to the parent company's website: jadabrands.com. This website has the Chick'n Mix front and center, featuring different flavor packs such as Barbecue and Mediterranean. According to the brand's website, the seasonings and plant-based chicken packs can be found in Whole Foods, H-E-B, Sprouts, Central Market, and online at Amazon. 

The company got a nice boost when Valerie Bertinelli featured chicken salt on an episode of "Valerie's Home Cooking" (via YouTube). The Food Network star made homemade potato chips sprinkled with the turmeric chicken salt and loved how it packed the flavor and had anti-inflammatory benefits. This level of exposure may have helped the company launch another new product, the Plant-Based Porkless Mix. 

The ever-expanding company seems to be doing well; according to the Shark Tank Blog, JADA Brands had $4 million in revenue as of May.