American Made Since 2010

tabitha stroup

santa cruz , California
Simple, seasonal, local preserves that bring the farm to the jar.... beyond the breakfast table. From toast to a roast or a cheese filled dream.

Tell us about your business.

FIC started officially in 2011, but took the past 23 years to build and create the idea and product. I cooked, baked, gardened, schooled, professionally cooked some more, ate, drank, taught a class or two, continually experimented, fed some folks and then one day in the kitchen something HAPPENED... My process is simple: work harder and smarter that the day before. FIC Evolution: The growth since day one has left my head spinning. Friend in Cheeses Jam Co. has evolved into a solid, honest business where education and the continuation of preservation traditions are priorities. Our backbone is being part of the food SOLUTION. We are having a blast to boot. Meeting farmers, vintners, mongers, freaks, geeks, and food lovers..the thread that binds us is love of food. I am one lucky peach to be able drive this wild ride. When Im old(er) I will look back and say..." I savored the journey"

What makes your business stand out?

My boss is Mother Nature, literally. If she decides to have a cool summer my offerings will differ and there is no arguing. She has the final say...sorry but no Golden Sageberry this summer. I follow my senses. The environment around me inspires and I translate this into my products. (With many oops along the way!) I source local and produce with the seasons. These are jams, jellies and preserves to match up with cheeses, meats and whatever you dream up. Unique...unique.....humm. I'd say I cuss alot but most of us kitchen folk do too. People think we are a cheese company.... Ahhh when I make jelly I blare Yma Sumac. Carrots make my lips itch. Food shows give me anxiety. First thing I ever cooked solo as a pee wee....cheese toast with salad supreme ( 70s staple). We are all snow flakes and from a distance may all seem simular but up close the details are pull up a chair.

What's the best business advice you've received?

You will never know until you try...

Comments (0)


Mark Your Calendar

    Jun. 17, 2015

    Nominate yourself or other aspiring entrepreneurs.

    Learn about American Made
    Sep. 21, 2015

    Vote for your favorite makers.

    Oct. 23, 2015

    2015 Editors' Award Winners and Audience Choice Winner announced.

    See past Award Winners
    Nov. 7, 2015

    Don’t miss our networking event and maker lecture series in New York City. Tickets available July 2015.

More Nominees

  • I see glass differently! Old glass items with personality are given new life as functional garden accessories when wrapped in my copper art.
    Crafts, Recycled, Upcycled, & Vintage Crafts
  • Sierra Metal Design

    Alicia Ballard
    We make personalized metal accessories. I started this by myself just making gifts for my family, but now offer a lot of different products.
    Style, Accessories
  • Smiling Hara Tempeh

    Sarah Yancey
    Smiling Hara Tempeh offers soy and soy-free tempeh, made from Organic legumes to the foodservice industry and retailers throughout the Southeast.
    Food, Agriculture & Sustainability
  • My business is a new product called scarf necklaces/wraps/belts one product that transforms drab into fab and can be used dozen ways. Made in USA
    Style, Accessories