A desire for a healthier lifestyle created a ripple effect for this couple to launch a Black-owned vegan supplement manufacturing company.
Keaira LaShae and her husband Kevin “KP” Price are the founders of protein brand Just Move Supplements.
View this post on Instagram
The venture is aligned as the couple share an interest in wellness. In fact, LaShae previously led an online fitness and nutrition platform, which stemmed from her desire to adopt a healthier lifestyle.
“The people I was growing up with in my community had illnesses like diabetes, like high blood pressure, high cholesterol, all these things and I kept thinking, ‘I don’t want that for me or my family,’” she reflected during an interview with ESSENCE. “I needed to be the change.”
Price shares similar sentiments to his wife and was driven to become more mindful with health and wellness after the loss of his father.
“I kind of got to have a cheat code because I played professional basketball for a while, but my true appreciation for health and wellness got started after my father died,” Price explained, according to ESSENCE.
He continued, “I’ve had a lot of people die from a heart attack, unfortunately, which is prevalent in our community. From there, I said to myself, ‘I’ve got to protect my heart.’ We didn’t have kids yet, but we wanted kids. Now we have three, so I had to make sure that I’m here for them. And I tell my wife all the time, in the back of my mind, I want to live past 61, which is where my father died. So that kind of really got me going.”
What followed was the shifting of gears to bring Just Move Supplements to market thanks to divine timing. The idea initially took a backseat for nine years due to insufficient funds to support the venture.
“If you look on our YouTube channel, you’ll see that about nine years ago, I was talking about having proteins of our own, and at the time, we couldn’t afford it,” LaShae told ESSENCE.
She added, “But we were tasting so many different proteins since then, and it’s just nasty. Especially vegan proteins. It just doesn’t taste good… but we knew what we wanted to do. And when the pandemic happened, I remember the night we talked about this, we were like, ‘You know what? Let’s try this. Let’s see if we can get all the things in order so that we can try to execute this, because it’s going to mean a lot for our community to have something like this.’”
The founders hit the ground running, reaching out to their mothers to find out their favorite baked good recipes in an effort to recreate the flavors, with the help of local manufacturers. Now the brand carries a slew of vegan protein powders in flavors that include chocolate cake, blueberry muffin, apple pie slice, banana pudding, and sweet potato pie, among others.
View this post on Instagram
Currently, the founders are focused on delivering a quality product to market, regardless of cost, and the business operates without any investors.
“We are definitely open to working with investors,” Price told ESSENCE. “Our main thing is, if we do accept investors, they have to understand what it is we’re trying to do. We are not out here to grab every dollar. We’re not out here to change up our formulas and cheapen them up to make more money.”
He continued, “We’re here not just for our people, but for people, period. There’s a lot of things in this country that is allowed to be ingested that shouldn’t be. We want to put out a quality product, even if it costs us a little bit more money. And we have to sacrifice a little bit of our profit margins to put this out. We want to do what’s best for our community, one step at a time.”