curdbox Engages Subscribers With Allergy-Free Options, Spotify Playlists

A cheese subscription service has successfully evolved to captivate a broad sphere of customers with allergy-friendly collections, social media engagement, and top tier assortments complete with dedicated playlists.
Jenn Mason founded curdbox in 2018 as a scalable version of curds&co., a Brookline, MA-based cheese shop and start-up Mason launched in 2017.

Far from your average cheese club, subscribers can choose from a “curated experience” shipment featuring three artisan cheeses, three specialty food pairings, information card with wine suggestions, in-depth blog post, themed Spotify playlist, and Curdcast podcast.

“We’re a cheese business. Cheese is made with milk, and that’s what we’ll continue to promote. There really aren’t enough good options to support an always-changing cheese and pairing curation.”
—Jenn Mason, curdbox

Also available is CurdboxFLEX, the nut-free, gluten-free and vegetarian option.

“We saw many of our current subscribers quickly subscribe to the allergy-friendly box as a gift for family,” Mason said. “We hope to keep growing this box, and letting people know that you can still eat very delicious food while accommodating dietary needs.”

However, curdbox has no immediate plans to include plant-based cheese.

“We’re a cheese business. Cheese is made with milk, and that’s what we’ll continue to promote,” Mason said. “There really aren’t enough good options to support an always-changing cheese and pairing curation.”
The company also recently added wine in three- and six-month subscriptions through wine partner, The Italian Selection.

The subscription price is $49.95 per month, plus shipping. curdbox typically arrives on the third Wednesday of the month.

Each month has a theme, which remains a secret until subscribers open the box. The November box will arrive in time for Thanksgiving, “but it’s too late to order, so we aren’t going to ruin the surprise for our subscribers,” Jenn Mason continued.

April’s curdbox selection was “Hot & Melty,” giving a wink to National Grilled Cheese Month. It featured three cheeses from Jasper Hill Farm – Cabot Clothbound Cheddar, Whitney and Vault 5, along with Hot Pepper Bacon Jam, Carolina Kettle Bee Sting Sriracha Chips, and Raspberry Mostarda.

Another June curdbox titled “Here Comes the Sun” included Beemster Classic Gouda and Goat Cheese, Flory’s Truckle by Milton Creamery, BjornQorn Classic Popcorn, Hot Cobb Jelly, and Pineapple Fruit Crisps.

The accompanying Spotify featured “Sunny Afternoon,” the Kinks; “Give it Up,” KC & the Sunshine Band; and “Here Comes The Sun,” by the Beatles, among other topical hits.

Selections in the “Going Nuts” curdbox were Bandaged Wrapped Cheddar by Fiscalini Farmstead, 36-Month Gouda by Artikaas, and Tres Leches by La Gruta del Sol, paired with Original Blend Pistachios, Guava Paste with Pecans, and Cranberry Hazelnut Crisps.

Recipients were serenaded by The Fratellis’ “Got Ma Nuts From a Hippie,” and Foo Fighters’ “For All the Cows.”

“First and foremost, I’m a storyteller and like to find as many ways as possible to engage the senses,” Mason said. “Using music just made sense.”

The company also puts together a monthly podcast with “some of the nerdy cheese and maker stuff,” Mason said.

“We like to tell people that we ship out a cheese-plus pairing experience every month,” she said.

“The company’s biggest evolution is how many people are sharing a cheese-story-in-a-box with us,” Mason said. “We have the opportunity to help tell the world about so many specialty cheese makers, which makes us extremely happy.”

“Selecting themes and products is the best part of our job,” Mason said.
“Of course, we have to fit within our budget, but otherwise – sky’s the limit.”

We love watching un-boxings that our customers do on social media, because we get to see the joy our little box brings to their kitchen island, coffee table, or girls’ night out, Mason continued.
The company just finished planning themes for 2023.

“Honestly, what customers seem to love is opening the box each month, with no idea what kind of tasting trip we’re going to take them on,” Mason continued.

While curdbox targets all consumers that appreciate good food with its #stopeatingboring hashtag, the company’s e-commerce affiliate focuses on the intricacies of how to make cheese boards – ideal for that critical Gen Z demographic.

“Gen Z likes our free online classroom and taking our ‘Cheese Board Personality’ quiz,” Mason said. “You just have to meet everyone where they are.”

So far, the most challenging aspects of running a successful subscription service are factors beyond our control like shipping issues and supply chain, no matter how much we plan ahead, Mason said.

“Our customers are the best, and are always understanding,” Mason said.
“Ultimately, we just make sure that delicious food gets to every doorstep and everyone is happy, with a belly full of cheese at the end.”

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