Uncle Zip's Beef Jerky Update

Uncle Zip's Beef Jerky on Shark Tank

Beef Jerky - Season 2 - Episode 204 - Update 2/21/2014
Uncle Zip's Beef Jerkey update from episode 204
Owner of Uncle Zip's Beef Jerky
Ken Howell from North Carolina
 Coming from someone who loves to make a little Beef Jerky myself, I'm surprised it's taken so long doing an update on the Famous Uncle Zip's Beef Jerky from season 2. Ken Howell the owner/operator of Uncle Zip's Beef Jerky, had the honors of presenting his business on the Shark Tank during Jeff Foxworthy's debut as the newest Shark on ABC.

Ken (Uncle Zip or the Jerky Man) came into the Shark Tank seeking $25,000.00 for 20% equity stake in his all natural beef jerky. This is a Family recipe passed down from his Dad who has since past away and Ken needs the investment to take this promising business to the next level. Howell claims this is the absolute freshest beef jerky on the market with zero additives or preservatives.

Interestingly Jeff Foxworthy already has his own line of Beef Jerky on the market but he does pay Ken a huge compliment saying "Uncle Zips is good, very good". Most of the beef jerky you see on store shelves have a multi-year shelf life because of the additives, chemicals and preservatives, but Uncle Zip's lasts only 2 months using his Dad's all natural Family recipe. Foxworthy might not of come out and said it directly, but how could his line of beef jerky or most any other brand on the market compete with taste from just this fact alone.

Getting down to the business side Ken has been in the Uncle Zip's Beef jerky Business for the past 10 years, but little activity growing the business for the last 7 years. The very best year's sales came in at $100,000.00 right before his dad past away. Last year's sale's (in 2011) was under $50k which didn't seem to impress any of the Sharks. Howell needs the $25k investment to upgrade his processing plant and then start expanding into other regional markets that will also need their own beef jerky processing plant because of the limited shelf life.

The problem is each new jerky plant cost $60,000.00 to open up, but Ken was only looking for a $25k investment to expand this business. This is perhaps one of the best examples where a contestant on the Shark Tank probably would have been better off asking for a larger investment upfront which would of made more business scene to the Sharks. Then again, selling the absolute freshest beef jerky on the market with only a 2 month shelf life would require a substantial investment building out multiple possessing plants for each region. Unfortunately none of the Sharks could see the value in Uncle Zip's all natural way of making beef jerky at a retail level, but completely forgot about the power of the Shark Tank Effect and all the online orders that would soon follow.

Uncle Zip's Beef Jerky after the Shark Tank Update

No doubt the contestants who add a lot of emotion to their stories always seem to generate the biggest buzz online whether they get a deal with the Sharks or not. Ken clearly came across as someone very passionate about a product He loves and enjoys sharing with others. Uncle Zip's is now available in approximately a dozen location's most centered around Fayetteville, North Carolina so it looks like Ken decided to take the Sharks advice and slowly build up the brand.

It might make sense having processing plants in several regions to grow the retail side, but when you get millions of Shark Tank Fan's coming directly to you via the Internet, all you need is one. Uncle Zip's has a variety of beef jerky available for sale on the website with comparable prices seen in most stores. Ken is also promoting a Business Opportunity selling the Uncle Zip's Brand or having it packaged private label to start your own opportunity. Uncle Zip's is also into Fund Raising which seems like a great way to help various organizations and bringing awareness to this All Natural Beef Jerky that actually has a shelf life unlike most competitors.

Visit Uncle Zip's Beef Jerky Website


  1. I ordered some about 2 weeks ago and have yet to hear a confirmation or receive the product. Makes me wonder... At least tell me something before I file a complaint with paypal uncle zip.

    1. Anonymous1:08 PM

      Same problem. Already filed a paypal claim

    2. He sadly passed away the other day.

    3. What he really did pass away????

    4. Yes, was diagnosed with cancer in October 1023 and passed away in May 2014.

  2. Ken Howell aka Uncle Zip passed away from Melanoma cancer today, 5/29/2014. RIP Uncle Zip :(

  3. His friend is suppose to start back making jerky

  4. He seemed lonely tonight on the replay of SharkTank. I wanted to jump through the TV and hug him. I felt so sad in my heart that a billionaire couldn't look at him and see this, giving him the 50,000 dollars he asked for so he could have hope to reach for the stars. Instead he was declined by the Sharks, but taken back to be with his loving Dad, whom he loved so much. He is in a better place than all of The Sharks in The Shark Tank....Ken Howell soared beyond the highest stars, and sits with his Dad in the most Noble Place called Heaven. May his Spirit help others learn what hard work is and know the value of love versus greedy noncompassion. Although SharkTank is a good program, many times the insensitivity of the Sharks is rather sad and unacceptable for people who should be examples. Money doesn't talk unless you know how to work it through thoughtful generosity in kindness itself. Kindness matters. If we could learn from one Shard, it would be Robert.hands down! Damond and Mark are nice enough, depending on their moods that day..it is tough to watch repeats of the same tough nasty fool, Mr. Wonderful. God help me if I see him in Boston. I would need to pray just to keep calm. I feel sorry for him. Laurie and Barbara are nice. Barbara was my favorite until she said you have to be poor to be an entrepreneur, and put the rich son down. Mark invested....so kind. The show is great but, but be kinder....be like Robert:-) Have a heart💕 When you all hurt People, I think you hurt many. Kindness matters. Mr Wonderful has changed the word "wonderful" in my book....the word "wonderful" is void, deleted, defunct in my vocabulary. Most people don't like mean people, so try to live like you would like to treated. Be kind. What you do or say may be the last words people hear. May Ken Howell, "the Jerky Man" rest in peace with his Dad in heaven above the stars!! So proud of you, Ken, and I never met you🎆Blessings, Carol Harding

  5. Just saw him on shark tank was going to invest all i wanted was a sample
    I had just lost both my parents so i no what its like to have to carry on a family legacy rest in peace

  6. Well it looks like those PayPal complaints aren't going to do any good. Just goes to.show how asshole people complain before getting the facts. I mean really people. RIP zippy your buddy.

  7. I make my own beef jerky, I can't stand store bought jerky anymore it makes me sick. But I saw this episode tonight and I always like to google what happens to some of these people/businesses (so I was particularly interested in this one) and I was really hoping to see that Zips Jerky became big and successful. And I'm so happy to see that it has but I'm so sad to hear about his passing. He seemed like such a kind gentle man. But at least before he passed away he was able to make this into a relatively successful small business. Good for you!! May you rest in peace with your father <3 y'all are in a better place!


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