How We Got Started


True Lemon (and all the wonderful products that came after) exists because David Schleider had a eureka moment while eating lunch with his father. David, who grew up in his family’s catering business and is an inventor by nature, had already developed some other food products and concepts by the time he had that memorable lunch with his father.

Both lemon lovers, David and his dad had asked the waiter for more lemons, when David thought to himself:

Why hasn’t anyone been able to figure out how to put fresh squeezed lemon taste into a packet (but way better than those yucky lemon juice packets) so it’s always convenient?

Given David’s background in food and catering, he also realized that lemons – as much as he loved them – had some other issues:

  • They go bad
  • Their taste is inconsistent
  • They’re not convenient
  • And often when lemons are used in a recipe, the recipe really only wants the lemon’s flavor, not the moisture inherent in lemon juice, which can run off or flash off depending on how it is being used.

For the next 3 years, David devoted himself entirely to revolutionizing citrus by creating a proprietary process that crystallizes the lemon’s juice and oils to deliver fresh squeezed taste in a convenient, shelf-stable format. (This patented process has become the “intel” inside of all our True products and allows us to “own” citrus in this format.)

In June 2003, David launched Grand Brands (now True Citrus Co.) with its first product, True Lemon. Unique to the market, each convenient sachet provided fresh squeezed taste, made with only simple and clean ingredients.

Like many start-up businesses, those early years were challenging, rocky, hard and yet super fun and rewarding. We worked a ton, we learned a lot, and we started hearing from people who found True Lemon and loved it. And what we loved was how delighted and surprised they were when they first tried True Lemon because David achieved exactly what he dreamed: He found a way to make fresh squeezed lemon taste easy and convenient.

At True Citrus, we knew there had to be a better way to consistently deliver the fresh squeezed taste of lemons, limes, oranges and grapefruit for water, drinks and recipes.

Today, our family of products has grown to 4 delicious, unsweetened citrus flavors (True Lemon, True Lime, True Orange and True Grapefruit), naturally sweetened, low calorie drink mixes (True Lemon Lemonades, and True Lime Limeades, and True Lemon Iced Teas), 0 calorie True Lemon Energy drinks powered by green tea, flavorful salt free seasoning blends and over 60 retail and foodservice products.

Whether you’re looking for a better way to lemon for your cooking applications and recipes, or just looking for a healthy and delicious way to enhance the flavor of your water, stay hydrated, and fight dehydration, True Citrus has refreshing, good-for-you options that you’ll love!

Our True Citrus team is passionate about sharing our big love of citrus with you and the world. Our mission continues to be to develop and produce the best crystallized-citrus based products possible. Let us know what you think about how we’re doing! We love hearing from our customers so drop us an email, give us a call toll-free at 866-885-3666 or send us a letter to 11501 Pocomoke Court, Suite D, Baltimore, MD 21220.

Looking for more? Check out all of our citrus products, browse recipes, read our blog, and learn about our partnerships with Feeding America and Girls on the Run – two organizations we’re honored to work with.