Launched in 2009, Clean Plates has evolved into a leading digital resource for people interested in eating and living well. The lifestyle site integrates food, sustainability, and wellness in its coverage to empower its readers to optimize their health, increase their energy, and perform at their peak in every aspect of their lives.
We caught up with the Founder and President Jared Koch — a health coach and nutritional consultant certified by the Teachers College of Columbia University, the Institute for Integrative Nutrition, and the Global Institute for Alternative Medicine — to dive deeper into the company’s mission, culture, future content plans, and more.
ForceBrands: What makes Clean Plates stand out from other similar lifestyle sites?
Jared Koch: Our content isn’t driven by a specific healthy eating ethos like keto or paleo. We empower people to find what works for them — to discover what healthy means to them. At our core, we believe that there’s no one right way to eat — what’s right for me is different than what’s right for you. But no matter what you’re eating, it comes down to the quality of ingredients and nutrient-dense foods. From a content perspective, we stand out in that 90 percent of our content is focused on food which puts us in a unique foodie-meets-wellness space.
FB: Who is your target audience?
JK: Our audience tends to be people interested in eating better quality food that tastes great. Although our readership tends to skew toward women in their late 20s to 40s with busy lifestyles, we take a gender-neutral, welcoming approach to all our content.
FB: What makes the Clean Plates team unique?
JK: We’re a small, nimble team with six core people. We have a very flexible approach to our work environment — it’s part-virtual, part-office, meaning we can work from home several days of the week and get the best of both worlds. The mentality is very much team-oriented. Everybody is really passionate about the mission. We’re passionate but practical and have a good way of coming together without egos.
FB: What do you think your readers value most about your content?
JK: We’ve built up credibility and trust with our consumers. They like our philosophy and really trust our recommendations. And because of that, they really take action on the recommendations and the products we review end up converting to trial.
Clean Plates is a great platform for brands to showcase their latest products and get in front of an engaged audience.
FB: Why do your readers trust your recommendations?
JK: As the founder, I’ve been studying nutrition since 2003. We’ve gotten great endorsements for our philosophy from Dr. Deepak Chopra to celebrities like Donna Karan.
FB: What’s ahead for Clean Plates?
JK: We just hired a new Editorial Director so we’re looking forward to making some exciting changes. We’re planning on continuing to produce great content that will continue to serve our reader. We’re looking at different forms of more premium, personalized content for our readers and potentially experimenting with different forms of e-commerce. Our office is currently located in New York City but we’re opening up a second location in San Francisco in the coming months.