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Safe Catch Enters the ‘Shark Tank’: A Look Inside the Company

Safe Catch, a canned tuna that is fished in the Pacific Ocean and contains low mercury levels, entered the Shark Tank in Season 8.

We interviewed Sean Wittenberg, its co-founder, who started the company with his childhood friend Bryan Boches. He explained what makes their tuna different. “We invented the technology to test each tuna for mercury. We test thousands of tuna every day and we only buy the fish meets our strict standards. No other brand tests each tuna for purity.”

Here’s what else he told us about…

Interested in Safe Catch? Buy it here.


How the Idea Came About

It started with my mom. She read an article that spoke to increasing variance of mercury levels in fish and the potential health concerns for moms and kids. “Kids can’t have tuna sandwiches anymore! What are we doing to protect kids?” she said. This set in motion the development of our breakthrough high-speed, mercury analyzer. We brought this technology to big seafood brands and they did not want to test their seafood. One executive said consumers would not understand or care for better purity in seafood. So, we did what any entrepreneur with zero food experience would do, we started our own brand.


Where You Can Buy It

We started selling Safe Catch in stores in June of 2015. Since then we’ve gotten into more than 4,000 retail outlets nationwide. Go to SafeCatch.com and order directly, or use the store finder to locate a retailer near you.
The one surprise has been Whole Foods. They said they won’t even review the category until 2018 and we have so many customers that ask why it is not available at Whole Foods. Our answer is, “You can’t win if you can’t pitch.”


Pros & Cons to Working With His Childhood Friend

The pros: We know each other well. We know what fuels our passion and drives us forward. We really care about each other. We always have each other’s back and we know that when one of us falls down, the other one is going to laugh first, pick the other up, and then push forward.
The cons: When you really care about someone it can be hard to give the tough feedback and criticism. It’s even harder when you’re at the table facing each other. To solve this challenge, we take it outside. We call it the truth walk and it works. It’s probably what keeps us fit. In a business moving this fast, we walk a lot!

Interested in Safe Catch? Buy it here.


The ‘Tank’ Experience- ‘Charging Onto the Battlefield Outnumbered’

We were contacted by a producer of the show who loved our products and our mission and suggested we submit a video. We did, and the rest is history. We were absolutely nervous- maybe a little freaked out too. Bryan said his heart was going to burst out of his chest because he was so amped up. I said it felt like charging onto the battlefield outnumbered. We know that there are millions of people watching and learning about our product, brand and technology for the first time. We were on stage for a long time and it felt like a minute. It was a complete blur and we left physically and mentally exhausted.


Plans for the Future

We can tell you what’s not in our future plans, sleep. Our mission won’t change. We will continue to provide consumers with pure and delicious seafood, while also protecting purity in our oceans, lakes and rivers. We plan on expanding our line to include new seafood products. While we have more tuna products coming out in the next 2 quarters, you can expect to see salmon, sardines and other healthy, delicious products coming next year.

Interested in Safe Catch? Buy it here.


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