Shop our corporate gifting offerings here

A pecan being unshelled for Zorro Pecans

Meet the Makers: Shelly Jones and Robert Sanchez of Zorro Pecans

, by Amber Chase

Zorro pecans in a bowl next to their packaged product in a lush, green field

Most nuts go through various stages of handling, transport, and processing before landing on a shelf, but Zorro Pecans have a direct path from farm to table. The brand is proudly, distinctly Southern, and the leadership envisions introducing consumers across the states to real, fresh, Georgia-grown pecans. In a way, it’s sharing a small taste of “their little slice of heaven” across all corners of the country. With pecans becoming more prevalent in the snack market in the form of snack mixes, candied treats, and a gourmet nut, the two founders jumped at the opportunity to make fresh, Georgia-grown pecans a household staple.

The founders of Zorro Pecans

A childhood in a bucolic setting gave Shelly Jones and Robert Sanchez a deep appreciation for the hard and honest work that goes into agriculture. As adults they learned that tilling fields and tending to their crops is not so different from building a brand from the ground up. 

Sanchez credits his parents for his inspiration and work ethic, saying, “You could line up the founders of the top 10 Fortune 500 companies, and my parents would outwork them. They showed me that as long as you believe in your idea, you can make it work.” His background was rich with many autumns spent tending pecan crops, and it inspired him to produce quality pecans accessible to everyone.

Meanwhile, Shelly’s family’s crop of pecans was garnering attention from family and friends throughout southwest Georgia.  As word spread and demand grew, a mission formed to make local, less-processed pecans more accessible, and Shelly and Robert partnered together to start Zorro Pecans.

Zorro Pecans is dedicated to changing the perspective on pecans. Much more than a topping or mix-in, for them, pecans play a central role in snack time. With fresh pecans, the best way to enjoy them is straight out of the bag. However, for versatility’s sake, Zorro Roasted Pecans can also make amazing additions to salads, pasta, ice cream, and morning yogurt bowls. To think outside of the box, pairing pecans with a drizzle of honey, lime juice and hot sauce, or seeped in an old fashioned is a great way to emphasize the earthy, sweet, and harmonious flavors of roasted pecans. “Pecans aren’t just for grandma’s pie,” Jones laughs. 

Zorro Pecans in their branded packaging

Sanchez himself envisions being on a plane one day and looking across the aisle to see someone pull out a bag of Zorro Pecans. That level of commonplace, everyday snacking is what he aspires to. He and Jones hope that by changing the narrative, other local and regional pecan farmers can produce and promote on a more global scale. 

Zorro Pecans is working in conjunction with the UGA FoodPIC to launch new flavors by 2024, and fans can expect new creative combinations of sweet, savory, and spicy.

Discover More 'Meet the Maker' Stories

  • Billie's Pecans in a Bowl

    , by brittany furbee Meet the Maker: Billie's Pecans

    Read more 

  • Meet the Maker: Liber & Co.

    , by Amber Chase Meet the Maker: Liber & Co.

    Read more 

  • Sweets Elderberry Product Line

    , by Amber Chase Meet the Maker: Sweets Elderberry

    Read more 

  • Sobremesa Mole and salsas in their packaging

    , by Amber Chase Meet the Maker: Sobremesa Mole & Salsas

    Read more 


Forgot your password?

Don't have an account yet?
Create account