Tuesday, November 12, 2013

Durham-based Barley Labs Named Top Four Finalist for Superbowl Commercial

Don't be surprised if, while watching the Super Bowl with friends and devouring a tasty snack from a local restaurant or enjoying a sip of local beer, a TV ad for a Durham start-up rolls across the screen. For those wanting to see such an ad, well that's gonna take a little voting.  Once a day, every day until December 1.
Barley, Chief Inspiration Officer and
VP of Quality Control at Barley Labs in Durham

In other words, there's not much time!

Barley Labs LLC, a Durham-based small business that creates all-natural dog treats out of recycled barley from a Fullsteam Brewery, is in the Top Four of Intuit’s Small Business Big Game contest sponsored by Intuit QuickBooks.

“Being in the Top Four means possibility,” said Theresa Chu, co-owner of Barley Labs. “We started Barley Labs with the dream that we would be able to make a living doing what we loved and what we’re passionate about. Now that dream feels like a real possibility thanks to the Intuit Small Business Big Game contest.” Barley Labs fans can vote once a day from Nov. 11 through Dec. 1. 

“We’re still in awe that we were selected out of the almost 15,000 companies that entered the contest,” said Scott Beaudry, co-owner of Barley Labs. “We couldn't be more excited to have the opportunity to share our story and our business with dog and beer lovers across the country.”
Chu and Beaudry launched Barley Labs in September 2012, selling their beer-grain dog treats online and through local retailers. Beaudry came up with the idea shortly after his love for beer turned into an avid home brewing hobby.
"It seemed like such a waste to just toss all the leftover grain from the process," said Beaudry. "I did some research and found I could take that barley and turn it into dog treats. It only seemed fair that if I was making treats for myself, I might as well make some for my dog, too."
Barley Labs works with other local small businesses to create their dog treats. Fullsteam Brewery supplies the barley they use, and Cultured Cow Creamery supplies the cheddar for their cheese treats. Both companies are based in Durham. 
“Our local community is incredible,” said Chu. “From the support we've had from Fullsteam to the local retailers that added our bags to their shelves and the customers who trusted us to provide yummy treats for their dogs—we couldn't be more grateful.”
Chu and Beaudry’s dog Barley, who is also listed as the Chief Inspiration Officer and VP of Quality Control for Barley Labs, influenced another major aspect of the business.
"We adopted Barley in 2009 from an animal shelter, and she has given us so much love and joy ever since,” said Beaudry. "Currently, we donate 10 cents from every bag sold to a local shelter in Durham, but one of our major goals as we grow is to be able to expand that support to even more shelters in our area and across the country so that animals can find their forever homes. We hope Intuit’s Small Business Big Game contest helps us do just that.”+
To join the Small Business Big Game social conversation, share on Facebook and Twitter using #TeamSmallBiz. Full rules are available at online.
Durham is an entrepreneurial place. Learn more about its great start-up scene...and, in case you missed it above, vote for Barley here.

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