Wild Squirrel Nut Butter featured on 'Shark Tank'

Wild Squirrel Nut Butter featured on 'Shark Tank'
UO students Keeley Tillotson (left) and Erika Welsh will present their nut butter company, Wild Squirrel Nut Butter, to a national audience as a featured business on ABC’s popular “Shark Tank.”

Keeley Tillotson and Erika Welsh will present their nut butter company, Wild Squirrel Nut Butter, to a national audience as a featured business on ABC’s popular “Shark Tank.”

The episode featuring the young entrepreneurs airs from 8 p.m. to 9 p.m. Friday May 11 on ABC.

Tillotson and Welsh filmed the episode last fall, presenting their product for judgment by Shark Tank’s panel of five self-made millionaires — Barbara Corcoran, Mark Cuban, Robert Herjavec, Daymond John and Kevin O’Leary, the Portland Business Journal reported.

“It’s hard to put your passion on a tray and hand it over for judgment, but that’s exactly what we did,” said Welsh, co-president.

Since then, the company has posted double-digit sales growth, added two new product lines, expanded its retail distribution network and garnered additional attention from outlets such as O, the Oprah magazine, and Glamor Magazine. It was an audience favorite at the Oregon Entrepreneurs Network’s Angel Oregon 2012 investment competition.

Tillotson and Welsh were sophomore roommates at the University of Oregon when they formed Wild Squirrel Nut Butter in January 2011.

Armed with raw peanuts, a new food processor and various other ingredients, including cinnamon, raisins, chocolate chips, coffee and coconut, they created a selection of peanut butter products sold through their website. New Seasons Market, Market of Choice and several independent stores carry Wild Squirrel products as well.

The Portland Business Journal is a news partner with KATU.com