Our Story

The OptiVega story started as a concept in 2014 when three important events converged: The first event was that Dr. Carsten Smidt, a leading nutritional scientist and multivitamin expert, created a novel formulation approach for a new generation of multivitamins that work with the body’s natural physiology. The second event was—and continues to be—the steadily rising popularity of plant-based diets. And the third event was that Dr. Smidt realized that vegan and vegetarian diets—while very healthy—produce a distinctly different fingerprint of vitamin and mineral shortfalls compared to regular diets, and that there were no vegan multivitamins available that could fill the unique gaps.

This lead to years of research in determining the nutritional gaps for each vitamin and mineral between what typically comes from modern plant-based diets and what the optimum intakes should be. At the same time, we researched the most natural and bioavailable forms for each nutrient and worked with experienced formulation pharmacists and analytical experts.

The result is OptiVega® Multivitamin & Mineral which was launched in 2017 as the first comprehensive multivitamin for vegans and vegetarians that is not only vegan but really addresses the unique nutrient gaps of plant-based diets with bioavailable ingredients. The next product under development will be a vegan omega-3 product with highly potent oils in a vegan, carrageenan-free soft gel capsule.

Carsten Smidt, Ph.D., FACN

Dr. Smidt is a well-known veteran in the dietary supplement industry with over 25 years of experience in research, product development and strategic management at science-driven companies, such as Mead Johnson, Nu Skin Pharmanex, Shaklee Corporation, USANA Health Sciences and doTERRA International. Dr. Smidt holds a Ph.D. in Nutrition Science from the University of California at Davis, is a fellow of the American College of Nutrition, and is the author of many research publications and patents.

Dr. Smidt is passionate about developing better multivitamins and other nutraceutical products as well as keeping fit, enjoying the outdoors and riding motorcycles.

Joe is an experienced business professional with broad knowledge and extensive experience around the globe. Joe has spent his career designing software, processes, and building successful teams for industries from health and wellness, enterprise software, to defense and DoD applications. He is a proud US Army Veteran.

Joe has a passion for developing solutions that make a difference and add value. When he is not spending time with his family he loves creating unique artwork from wood.

Joe Ford