About Jeff’s Famous Jerky
Our Story: Jeff was just a hungry teenager in the early 1970’s when he realized his favorite on-the-go snack had the potential to be so much better. That summer, when he was just 16, he bought a dehydrator from a vendor at the county fair and became fascinated with the process of how the flavors intensified by using flavorful marinades during the dehydration process. Over the years he spent thousands of hours experimenting with recipes, intent on making beef jerky the way that he envisioned it could be… intensely full of flavor, soft and tender with the taste and texture of a fine steak but without the chemical preservatives. Jeff’s relentless quest for culinary flavor perfection kept him researching different cultural influences and refining and innovating new fusion recipes for more than three decades before he ever offered his jerky for sale to the public in 2010. Soon people from all over the world were enjoying jerky perfection and the Jeff’s Famous legacy continues today.
The Jeff’s Famous brand first launched their business model with only a few thousand dollars during the Great Recession of 2010, a time in history that the Department of Labor called, “the worst economic downturn since the Great Depression”. Humble beginnings during tough times meant hard work and creative business strategies were the only way to grow.
Today, Jeff’s Famous is a nationally registered trademark, privately owned by Jeff’s Famous Foods, Inc. “We are proud to say that we have sold millions bags of Jeff’s Famous beef jerky… and our brand has seriously arrived.” says CEO, Jeff Richards. “We continue to grow by leaps and bounds as we expand the Jeff’s Famous brand through many eight growing channels of distribution. In 2013, we were one of the first to bring high quality gourmet bacon jerky to the marketplace. The competition has tried to replicate our product, but there is only one original. We are proud to offer mouth-watering, delicious, innovative flavors of jerky and provide the best service in the industry.”
In 2020, the COVID-19 pandemic, also known as the coronavirus pandemic has caused a global social and economic disruption; now classified in history as the largest global recession since the Great Depression. “It’s a tough time for families and businesses all over the world”, says Jeff. “The meat snack industry has been impacted on many, many levels including shortages of supplies and only a small workforce of people to meet the demands of manufacturing and distribution of our products. As a company, the humbling experience has made us rethink and pivot in positive ways that might have taken us years to bring forth in normal times. This isn’t the first time we have had to deal with tough adversity and it won’t be the last. Our hearts go out to our customers and everyone, even our competitors who have experienced loss, both personal and financial and we continue to do our best to look ahead and think positive toward a brighter future.”
Founder | President | CEO
Jeff’s Favorite Flavor: He created them… so he LOVES them all, but the two flavors of beef jerky he consumes most often are Jamaican Jerk and Cranberry Jalapeno. Favorite Bacon: Sriracha Black Pepper
A career that spans over 40 years of corporate management, business development and consulting experience in a variety of industries including more than 40 years in the food service industry. As the founder and co-founder of several businesses, Jeff has extensive experience in business start-ups, business development, corporate training, product development, strategic planning and innovative advanced techniques for rapid business success.
Jeff Insists on Being Accessible. “We have to keep open communication and listen to our customers… it is the only way that we can keep growing, by serving them well. When I used to do consulting and business development projects the most common question was… if you could give us one business strategy that would bring us great success, what would it be? That’s easy, the answer is simple… ANSWER your phone! Make yourself wildly accessible and there is no better way to capture every opportunity than answering your phone and being accessible. You never know when a giant opportunity is going to present it self. In today’s real world, that is not as possible anymore because of so many spam calls all day long, but you can still respond to the message immediately. You just never know who is going to be on the other end of that call and some of those calls that I answered personally have turned into giant opportunities. You don’t want to miss that. The same goes for communication that comes in other ways too. Can you imagine the competitive advantage by answering every email quickly?”
Jeff’s Philosophy Regarding Competition: “We don’t worry about the competition, because we only compete with ourselves, always striving for new levels of excellence and integrity in every facet of our business, relentlessly every year.”
Jeff lives in the pristine, four-season, rural mountain community of Big Bear Lake, California with his loving vibrant wife, energetic son and two spoiled cats. He enjoys cooking and great food and quality time with family.
Award Winning Gourmet Beef Jerky… Millions of Bags Sold
The best beef jerky is in the details and we take the quality and taste of our beef jerky extremely seriously. That starts with a superior cut of American beef that is tender and full of flavor. We use the best ingredients and fine-tune our own marinades and recipes over and over until they reach culinary perfection. Many of the recipes were refined for three decades before we ever produced them commercially and even then it took two years to fine-tune our commercial process so that we could really deliver extraordinary flavor and quality to our customers. Some of our competitors may be satisfied with using shortcuts and standard ingredients, but that is no way to make a superior product. Every aspect of our quality goes beyond expectation to produce a mouth-watering, tender, superior, bold-flavored gourmet jerky that our customers love.
GOURMET BACON?… Five years in development; there are no short cuts in creating the best for every customer! We are fortunate and humbled to have received many awards and much recognition for excellence in quality and taste. Watch the video clip below if you want to witness our crowning of “Best Beef Jerky in America, 1st Place Winner” for our signature Black Pepper & Sea Salt flavor, from a 6 week, 64 brand, elimination-style beef jerky competition, but otherwise just grab a bag and try it for yourself! Get some from our website or use the Store Finder on our homepage to locate a retailer that carries our brand.
Please follow and connect with us on social media and help us spread the word! We love to hear from our customers and don’t be surprised if Jeff responds to you personally. We take our customers as serious as we do our quality! Find us on Facebook here: https://www.facebook.com/JeffsFamousJerky/
Nearly 3 million people have watched our hilarious YouTube Review: Irish People Try Real American Jerky. And that opportunity came because Jeff personally and promptly answered an email from a customer. The first Irish People Try video quickly led to a second one as well and between the two… about 4 million views and it still brings us business and brand recognition from all over the world.