According to a letter to employees sent today, Juicero CEO Jeff Dunn allegedly called for a “strategic shift” at the company that would involve cutting 25 percent of staff and dropping the price of the press to under $200.
Juicero found itself in the Silicon Valley limelight in April, when Bloomberg reporters got ahold of one of the company’s high-end presses and found that they could, by hand, squeeze a considerable amount of juice out of the proprietary juice bags that are designed to work with the appliance. That left many to question what the juicer, which started at $700 and was later reduced to $400, was really doing. It couldn’t press any fruits or vegetables other than what came in the juice bags (which are delivered to customers’ doors for $5 to $7 a pouch). And if you buy into the idea that cold-pressed juice is somehow healthier for you than juice from a centrifugal blender (a claim for which there is very little evidence), then that purpose seemed to be thwarted as well—the produce in several bags seemed to already be in a pulp form.
After much ridicule, Juicero CEO Jeff Dunn defended his company’s product, saying that the elaborately engineered machine delivered more consistent pouch presses and prevented users from accidentally pressing expired juice packs by reading a barcode on the pack’s label.