Eat, Drink And Be indie: Tasty Recipes, Inspiring Maker Stories & Exclusives


Sue Zhou is a free bird, after making the leap from securities regulatory attorney to seeds.

Raised in a Chinese family obsessed with food (her grandparents live on a farm in Shanghai, and her mother and aunties cook fresh, seasonally-based meals every day), Sue has always believed that it’s meant to nourish both body and soul. So after years spent helping grow companies in the fintech world — where she empowered people to make healthier financial decisions — she felt ready to fly the nest and spread her own wings, by launching a snack food startup with a focus on promoting physical wellbeing.

Not that Byrdfood is diet food. In fact, Sue is adamantly opposed to the idea of healthy eating as being about denial or restrictions. Instead, it should promote joy and connectivity, while acting as fuel and medicine. That’s how the idea for her Brooklyn-produced snacks were hatched. Sort of like a savory granola, the craveable clusters of organic oats and seeds (she doesn’t use nuts, which are an allergen risk, and require more water and energy to grow) are easy to grab, enjoyable to eat, and designed to leave you feeling satisfied, thanks to a mix of protein, fiber, healthy fats and complex carbs. They’re sugar-free, gluten-free and vegan, yet they’re not as self-serious as so-called “healthy” snacks often are. Bound with fun and quirky combos of herbs and spices, these bites are for the birds...if they eat pizza, tacos and everything bagels, that is.

The company itself is equally tweetworthy, as a proudly minority and woman-owned business with open hiring practices and a focus on sustainability. Which is to say, we’re officially Byrd the best possible way.