Business Matters: Maple Grove’s Vertical Spice Finds Kitchen Niche
Inside a Maple Grove warehouse in the 8900 block of Zachary Lane N., Scott Miedtke’s mind is filled with clutter. Make that kitchen clutter.
“I wanted something where I could pull the spice out, have it readily available, and right in front of me,” Miedtke said.
Spices gave Scott and his wife, Linda, trouble. Each had a different way of organizing them. They needed a better way.
“Clumsy me, knocking over spices in the cabinet, knocking over the carousel,” said Miedtke.
From Spice Clutter to Business Venture
That common kitchen frustration led to a business idea 10 years ago in the couple’s Maple Grove kitchen. They came up with a spice rack system both could agree on.
“I needed something for my own kitchen. I couldn’t find it out there,” recalled Miedtke.
The couple started Vertical Spice. The company’s most popular design is its 222x2x11 spice rack.
“This is how it all started,” said Miedtke. “All it means is there’s three rows of two-inch drawers, two tiers tall, and 11-inch deep, fits a standard kitchen cabinet.”
The company patented its system. It soon led to impressive growth and worldwide sales.
“The big selling point for ours is our elastic sides that allow you to pull product in and out of the slides or the drawers very easily,” said Miedtke.
Vertical Spice developed a variety of sizes to fit practically any kitchen cabinet.
“We have five different drawer widths, five different base widths, and three different depths,” said Mietdke.
It adds up to 75 different products. Because of its growth, Vertical Spice moved to its Zachary Lane home a couple months ago, the company’s third home in Maple Grove, each one double the previous size. It added employees and equipment along the way. People like Bill Bowen assemble the products.
“I enjoy working here. I like hands on. You get to the see the product from the front to the back, beginning to end. It’s satisfying,” said Bowen.
Vertical Spice shipped 20,000 spice racks this year alone.
“We sell all across the country, to Canada, we’ve sold to New Zealand, Australia, South Africa, South America, Singapore,” rattled off Mietdke. “It’s made us a salesman, a vendor to the world.”
Vertical Spice Not Done with Designs
About 90 to 95 of the company’s sales are online. And it’s not done coming up with new designs. Vertical Spice is currently working on storage solutions for other parts of the house.
So what is it about keeping spices organized? It turns out Mietdke has a confession.
“I’m a bigger eater at my house, my wife’s a good cook. She goes through all the spices. I misplace all the spices. So this helps us.
It not only helps him, but the other cooks in the kitchen.
“This is just fitting a need,” he said. “We’re lucky enough to hit the wave of the new cooks in the world.”
For more information on Vertical Spice: https://www.verticalspice.com