Itacate Foods, a Latin Cuisine Backpacking Meals Brand, Diversifies REI Co-op Shelves with Retail Partnership

February 15, 2024

Three original flavors and an exclusive, newly-launched dessert will be available in 11 REI stores nationwide and REI’s website

SACRAMENTO, Calif. (Feb. 15 , 2024)/OUTDOOR SPORTSWIRE/ – Itacate Foods, the dehydrated meals brand bringing the richness of Latin cuisine and culture to the outdoors, proudly announces its retail partnership with REI Co-op. Founded by Martha Y Díaz in 2021, Itacate (meaning “food for the journey” in the Aztec language Nahuatl) offers a culinary pathway for backpacking enthusiasts to explore and connect with Diaz’s Mexican heritage through four community-sourced recipes, with more flavors to come. After experiencing significant growth in its year and a half of business, Itacate has successfully secured partnerships with various online outdoor specialty retailers nationwide with the notable inclusion of REI among them.

“With Itacate, I envision people finding a reflection of themselves and their journeys in a category where Latin culture has not been reflected, previously,” said Itacate founder Martha Y Díaz. “Meal preparation and planning can be a huge barrier for aspiring adventurers, which is why having a familiar menu to turn to is essential in diversifying participation in the outdoors. I’m encouraged that REI shares our desire to foster inclusivity through food in the backcountry.”

Currently Itacate offers three traditional Mexican meals with bold flavor bases and vegetarian, protein-rich ingredients, as well as one dairy-free, fruit-laden dessert option that can be served for breakfast or as an evening treat. All Itacate options rehydrate in 15 minutes or less and are packaged in stand-up pouches containing at least 49% post-consumer recycled (PCR) material, leading the backpacking food category in packaging sustainability.

Itacate Backpacking Meals:

  • Charge-Up Chilaquiles | A traditional Mexican breakfast of tortilla chips smothered in a spicy tomatillo salsa and beans, topped with egg and panela cheese (17 grams of protein, 490 calories)
  • Sunset Caldo | Caldo Tlalpeño is a classic central Mexican soup consisting of a complex spicy chipotle-based broth topped with rice, garbanzo, chayote squash and a squeeze of lime (16 grams of protein, 490 calories)
  • Campsite Lentejas | Hearty lentil soup with a tomato and cilantro base (24 grams of protein, 490 calories)
  • Aventura Arróz Con Leche | Plant-based version of the traditional dessert including coconut milk, strawberries, chia, and a dash of cinnamon – (7 grams of protein, 450 calories)

Through its Juntos Outdoors programming, every year a nonprofit organization receives a portion of Itacate sales to continue increasing DEI in the outdoors. This year Itacate is partnering with Adventure Risk Challenge to support its work in enhancing diversity and inclusion in outdoor recreation by providing leadership training to youth via backcountry recreation.

“One of our goals is to ensure every Itacate partner – from our retail channels to supply chain vendors to nonprofit organizations in the outdoor space – is committed to creating an equitable and welcoming environment for historically underrepresented communities,” says Cynthia Aguilar Gomez, Marketing Lead at Itacate Foods. “Receiving positive acknowledgement and investments from industry leaders, like REI, ​​is incredibly validating and inspires us to keep moving forward in serving our communities.”

All Itacate meals ($12.49 – $6.95 MSRP) are available on itacatefoods.com, as well as select REI stores and, REI.com.

For more information or media inquiries, please contact Founder Martha Y Díaz (martha@itacatefoods.com).

About Itacate Foods

Founded in 2021 under the leadership of founder Martha Yolanda Díaz, Itacate Foods is a women and BIPOC-owned venture committed to bringing the vibrant tastes of Latin cuisine to outdoor enthusiasts. Demonstrating a strong dedication to diversity, equity, and inclusion, In alignment with the belief that a more diverse, equitable, and inclusive outdoors benefits everyone, Itacate Foods allocates a portion of its sales to support organizations working towards enhancing diversity and inclusion in outdoor recreation. The debut of their initial product range in September 2022 consisted of flavors like Chilaquiles Verdes, Caldo Tlalpeño and Lentil soup as a result of meticulous review and refinement, incorporating valuable feedback from diverse community groups. Itacate Foods is committed to genuinely reflecting the richness of Latin cuisine and culture in the outdoors, ensuring that its offerings resonate with a diverse audience. This dedication goes beyond creating diverse food; it’s about providing a sense of belonging and representation for underrepresented communities through meal offerings that haven’t been readily available to them in the past.