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BioFluff plant-based fur

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BioFluff Secures $2.5M in Seed Funding for Plant-Based Fur Alternatives

BioFluff, a biomaterials startup describing itself as the first fully plant-based fur alternative, has successfully closed its seed funding round, securing $2.5 million from leading venture capital firms, spearheaded by agrifood tech investor Astanor Ventures. Astanor Ventures has invested in over 45 agrifood companies globally, including plant-based businesses MicroHarvest, Wicked Kitchen, and Umiami. This funding marks a significant milestone for BioFluff, following a pre-seed round of $0.5 million in 2022, led by SOSV, PDS Limited & Joyance Partners. “We were impressed by the passion and determination of the founding team. Biofluff has a unique offering for the luxury industry, fashion, and textiles, which is in full alignment with the Astanor mission of a more regenerative economy,” stated Christina Ulardic, a partner at Astanor Ventures. BioFluff, …


Plant based grilled burger patty with grill marks and rock salt isolated on white. Top view.

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HIFOOD and Alianza Team Introduce Revolutionary Fat Alternative to Tropical Oils for Better Plant-Based Meat

HIFOOD and Alianza Team Europe have developed an innovative, clean-label, plant-based fat alternative to tropical oils and chemical emulsions. The companies claim that the new product improves the taste and texture of plant-based meat, allowing manufacturers to make realistic alternatives. The Italian company HIFOOD, a CSM Ingredients subsidiary, specializes in researching, developing, and producing natural ingredients. Alianza Team Europe, headquartered in Germany, is the European division of the Colombian multinational vegetable fats and oils company Alianza Team. MirrorTissue Using MirrorTissue, a plant-based lipid solution by Alianza Team, and HIFOOD’s proprietary proteins, plant fibers, and technologies, the companies developed a protein emulsion with superior performance.  Made with a blend of allergen-free plant proteins, soluble plant fibers from oilseeds, and local oils and fats, the new enhanced product contains 10% more natural ingredients than …


Ripple Foods half & half

© Ripple Foods

Investments & Finance

Ripple Foods Raises $49 Million in Latest Funding Round

According to a US Securities and Exchange Commission filing, alt-dairy producer Ripple Foods has raised $49 million in funding, as first reported by Forbes. Founded in 2014, Ripple Food uses protein from sustainably produced yellow peas, claiming to use significantly less water than dairy and other dairy alternatives. The company’s product lineup includes vegan ice cream, plant-based milk, kids’ milk, protein shakes, and dairy-free half and half, all made from pea protein. In 2021, the company announced a $60 million Series E funding round, exceeding its capital raise goals, with plans to accelerate innovation and growth across product categories and expand into new channels and global markets. The funding round seems to have paid off, with the company extending its product lineups with the launch of its Oatmilk + Protein milk last …


Emily Nytko-Lutz

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Intellectual Property Law Expert Emily Nytko-Lutz Discusses the Chemistry of Non Dairy Cheesemaking

Emily Nytko-Lutz, Senior Associate at intellectual property law firm Reddie & Grose, handles patent work in the chemical and general mechanical fields. Emily advises a range of domestic and international companies. She is experienced in patent drafting and global patent prosecution, conducting due diligence and European freedom-to-operate assessments and European oppositions and appeals. Emily completed a PhD at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology in Inorganic Chemistry with a focus on the development of frustrated magnetic materials. Can non-dairy cheese melt barriers and conquer our tastebuds? By Emily Nytko-Lutz Consumers are increasingly seeking alternatives to dairy-based cheeses due to environmental, animal welfare, and personal health concerns. Producing a plant-based cheese that melts and stretches similarly to dairy cheese, however, represents a significant technological challenge. Casein, a …


meat vs vegetables


Politics & Law

Plant-Based Activists Take a Seat at COP28 While Big Meat & Dairy Arrive in Full Force to Launch Counter-Attack

COP28, the United Nations’ climate conference, starts today in Dubai and will continue until December 12. And while work is being done by climate and food activists at the event to bring the urgency of addressing food system change into focus, the meat and dairy industry is in town sharpening tools in preparation for what could be effectively the biggest greenwashing operation the world has ever seen. It may come as no surprise that the event, attended by world leaders and multi-billionaires, with the UK Prime Minister, King Charles, and Foreign Secretary David Cameron all arriving in separate jets, serves as a platform for those in power and that their strategy would be galvanised this year in order to oppose those petitioning against the consumption …


dog with food

Image courtesy ProVeg International

Pet Food

CULT Food Science Releases Third Proprietary Ingredient for Alternative Pet Food

Canada-based cell-ag investor CULT Food Science has released details and commercialization plans for its latest proprietary ingredient for alternative pet food, Bmeaty. This marks the third proprietary ingredient from the company, offering a savory, umami flavor appealing to cats and dogs. Made through a fermentation and fractionation process, Bmeaty is a blend of yeast extract, hydrolyzed yeast, and carrier yeast, which contains about 40% protein, along with fiber and B vitamins, helping to support digestion, cognitive health, and heart health. Bmeaty joins CULT’s lineup of patented ingredients for pet food, including Bmmune and Bflora. The CEO of CULT Food Science, Mitchell Scott (previously of The Very Good Food Co / The Very Good Butchers), who was appointed at the beginning of this month, commented, “We …


ProVeg Czechia product lineup

© ProVeg Czechia

Politics & Law

Czech Parliament Hosts Seminar to Promote Plant-Based Diets

In early November, the Czech Chamber of Deputies hosted a seminar titled “New Trends in the Food Industry – an opportunity for the Czech Economy, a healthier society and a sustainable future?”. Organized by Klára Kocmanová, Vice President of the Environment Committee, and sponsored by the Ministers of Environment and Health, this event gathered food producers, retailers, and specialists to discuss advancing alternative protein sources. ProVeg Czechia‘s food industry and retail consultant, Tereza Trávníčková, initiated the seminar, highlighting the increasing adoption of plant-based diets among Czechs and the importance of achieving price parity. “Price significantly influences consumer decisions. Czech consumers face significant price differences: they pay over 160% more for a plant-based alternative to minced meat and almost 60% more for a plant-based alternative to …


Nonprofit organisation Cellular Agriculture Australia (CAA) announces the launch of a new cellular agriculture language guide.

© Cellular Agriculture Australia

Cultivated, Cell-Cultured & Biotechnology

Cellular Agriculture Australia Launches New Language Guide to Standardise Terminology in the Industry

Nonprofit organisation Cellular Agriculture Australia (CAA) announces the launch of a new tool, Language Guide V1.0, developed to standardize and harmonise the terminology of the cellular agriculture industry. Using secondary research and input from sector leaders across the APAC region, CAA’s new Language Guide sets a unified terminology and key terms. At the same time, it provides optional communication guidelines for marketing and brand positioning strategies to help companies address language inconsistencies in their activities and product descriptions. Moreover, the CAA explains that a unified nomenclature is significant for the sector, the media, and consumers before approvals in the country. The cultivated meat company Vow is currently going through the first evaluations by food regulators in Australia. Additionally, other companies are also preparing to seek regulatory approval in …


Anne-Marie Gendreau of Lallemand

Anne-Marie Gendreau of Lallemand ©MCF


Lallemand: “The Plant-Based Market is Moving Forward Rapidly, and Innovation is Key”

Anne-Marie Gendreau is a Canadian pastry chef and food scientist. She is the North American Applied R&D team leader at Lallemand Bio-Ingredients. Anne-Marie is known for her ability to develop formulations and provide customized support across a broad range of food product categories. She embraces the challenge and variety in making plant-based savory applications or sweeter plant-based developments. Can you highlight some of the unique properties of Lallemand’s plant-based ingredients and how they contribute to the quality of plant-based products? Recently, we’ve been developing yeast extract-composed flavor bases, Savor-Lyfe® CI is the latest addition to the product line. The typical meaty yeast extract flavor profile is elaborated to contribute more specifically to the poultry flavor of plant-based foods. How does Lallemand approach innovation in the development …


LoveRaw launches at Albert Heijn and Shell in the Netherlands

© LoveRaw

Sweets & Snacks

LoveRaw Launches at Hundreds of Albert Heijn and Shell Stores Across the Netherlands

Fast-growing UK-based vegan chocolate brand LoveRaw has gained new listings at two Dutch retailers — Shell and the Netherlands’ largest supermarket chain, Albert Heijn. LoveRaw’s M:lk Choc Wafer Multipack will now be available at 250 Albert Heijn stores, while the brand’s Cre&m Wafer Bar will be available at 150 Shell locations in M:lk and White varieties. This is LoveRaw’s first nationwide listing outside the UK, though the brand was already available in the Netherlands at Holland & Barrett and Flink. Within the UK, LoveRaw is available at major national retailers such as Tesco, Co-op, Waitrose, and Ocado. The brand recently announced that it would be launching at SPAR stores internationally after joining the retailer’s Challenger Brand program, and has also just secured its first ever …


Armored Fresh american cheese slices almond

© Armored Fresh

Milk- and Dairy Alternatives

Armored Fresh Expands Retail Presence, Disrupting $2.4 Billion US Cheese Slice Market

Food tech alt dairy company Armored Fresh is expanding the US retail footprint for its Almond Milk American Cheese Slices with new partnerships established Fresh Thyme Market, Town and Country Foods, Fred Meyer, and more. Armored Fresh specializes in crafting alternative dairy products using “patented fermentation” to overcome the taste barrier and meltability challenges commonly associated with plant-based cheeses. After launching the product online earlier this year, these new retail partnerships will help make Armored Fresh’s plant-based cheese products more accessible to a wider audience. Rudy Yoo, CEO of Armored Fresh, states, “We are on a mission to bring zero dairy cheeses to the masses, so everyone can enjoy what we love about cheese, regardless of [whether] they are plant-based or not.” Disrupting a multi-billion …


Stella McCartney and Veuve Clicquot partner to recycle grape waste and make luxury vegan leather.

© VEGEA/Stella McCartney

Fashion, Design & Beauty

Stella McCartney Partners with Champagne House Veuve Clicquot to Turn Grape Waste Into Luxurious Vegan Leather 

British designer Stella McCartney and the famous champagne house Veuve Clicquot have partnered to recycle grape waste to make a luxurious vegan leather with sustainability credentials. The two brands are subsidiaries of LVMH (Louis Vuitton-Moët-Hennessy), the world’s leading luxury group, which reportedly gets one-third of its revenues from fashion and leather goods. In April 2023, LVMH was in news headlines, named as the first European company to reach a $500bn valuation. Stella McCartney states that with this initiative, both companies are pursuing sustainable, circular economy, and regenerative practices under the umbrella and luxury standards of LVMH. The environmental impact of animal leather is immense, with animal agriculture contributing to an estimated 11-17% of the world’s GHG emissions, argues the fashion brand. VEGEA’s grape skin The Italian …


© Uncommon

Politics & Law

UK Food Standards Agency Unveils New Guidance on Authorisation Process for Cell-Cultivated Products in Great Britain

The UK’s Food Standards Agency (FSA) has recently released guidance for businesses on cell-cultivated products and the authorisation process to market these products in Great Britain.  The FSA is responsible for food safety and food hygiene in England, Wales, and Northern Ireland. However, this guide is specific to England and Wales.  The FSA’s new guidance combines general food law regulations with novel food and GMO regulations and offers business advice to streamline the authorisation process. It includes definitions, status, application details, and recommendations on product safety, labelling, and tasting trials. The UK government has been looking to streamline the approval for cultivated meat to boost food security and sustainability. Meanwhile, the first cultivated meat product on the market is still pending in the UK. To …


Beyond Stack Burger hero shot

© Beyond Meat

Market & Trends

Continued Decline in US Meat Consumption is “Long-Term Industry Disruption” Creating Significant Opportunity

The United States has witnessed a steady decline in meat consumption for the second consecutive year. Retail sales data from IRI Worldwide reveals that 2023 marks the second consecutive year of declining meat purchase volumes. As of October 2023, overall meat sales by volume have dipped 4% year-over-year and 6% over the past two years. This decline is evident across various meat categories, including a 10% year-over-year drop in pork sales volumes, a 10% year-over-year drop in seafood sales volumes, and a 13% drop in turkey sales volumes. While plant-based meat alternatives have also experienced a decline in sales volumes amidst the current economic climate, the broader shift away from animal proteins has presented increased opportunities for other plant-based food categories. Nick Cooney, Managing Partner …


Vegan Zeastar Coconut Shrimpz

© Vegan Zeastar

Meat- and Fish Alternatives

Vegan Zeastar Adds Crispy Coconut Shrimpz to Plant-Based Shrimp Range

Netherlands-based Vegan Zeastar, which claims to be the world’s largest supplier of plant-based shrimp, introduces the newest member of its family of 100% plant-based shrimp with Crispy Coconut Shrimpz. The NPD joins the lineup of Crispy Chili Shrimpz, Crispy Lemon Shrimpz, and Original Vegan Shrimpz, as introduced in November last year. So far in 2023, Zeastar has also launched the “world’s first” complete range of vegan sushi and poke bowl products and more recently, another “world’s first” in the form of a plant-based king crab product which it claims is cheaper than the conventional equivalent. The company, a brand of Vegan Finest Foods, offers a wide product range ranging from vegan Sashimi Salmon, No Tuna, Tasty Codd, Kalamariz, and Tuna Schnitzel. The market is ready …


Niklas Kaskeala, chairman of Plant Based Foods Finland. Image supplied.

Company News

Oatly Manager Chairs New ‘Plant Based Foods Finland’ Business Group Targeting Plant-Based Market Growth

A new business association, Plant Based Foods Finland (Pro Vege in Finnish), has been established to help increase the share of plant-based foods in the Finnish food system. Among the association’s 18 founding members are the country’s three largest supermarket chains — Kesko, SOK, and Lidl Finland — said to account for 92% of the food retail market. Several restaurants and plant-based companies are also included; the full list is Food Farm, Kotipizza Group, Lipasu, MeEat Food Tech, Mö Foods, Nordic Umami Company, Oatly, Oy Soya Ab, Porlammi Dairy, Raisio, Tmi Jukka Kajan, Virna Food Radecon, Vöner, WWF Finland and Ylva Palvelut. Ambitious plans, mission-aligned partners Plant Based Foods Finland will work to make plant-based foods attractive to as many people as possible, with a …


The founding team of Infinite Roots

The founding team of Infinite Roots (from left to right) Mazen Rizk, Cathy Preißer and Thibault Godard © Infinite Roots

Company News

Mushlabs Becomes Infinite Roots, Plans to Pioneer New Era of Sustainable Foodtech

Hamburg biotech company Mushlabs announces its new corporate brand: Mushlabs will become Infinite Roots, with the transformation representing a deeper commitment to food security and sustainability and reinforcing the company’s commitment to promoting healthier diets and a healthier planet. As a specialist in mushroom mycelium-based nutrition, Infinite Roots supports the sustainable revolution in food production. According to the company, the new brand development symbolizes the transition from an emerging startup phase to a mature corporate era. Three years ago the company raised $10 million in Series A to upscale production to industrial level, stating its vision to “bring about a meaningful and lasting change to our food system”. Further to this mission, Infinite Roots says that its new identity seeks to reflect the essence of …


BENEO unveils innovations in plant-based beef alternatives

Image courtesy of BENEO


BENEO Unveils New Range of Semi-Finished Plant-Based Products for Beef Alternatives

German ingredients manufacturer BENEO has unveiled two new semi-finished plant-based products for beef alternatives: Beef Bites and Minced Meat. The semi-finished products, which are easy-to-process inputs that have undergone some processing, offer manufacturers an easy solution to create “juicy and meaty” alternatives to beef. They have been developed with a blend of pea and mycoprotein by Meatless BV, a Dutch producer of texturized plant proteins that was acquired by BENEO in 2022. The new range will launch at the beginning of 2024; however, the company is offering Fi Europe  2023(currently ongoing) participants the opportunity to taste the products in plant-based dishes prepared by Culinary Chef Jelbrich Hendrickx from the BENEO-Technology Center. Niels E. Hower of BENEO’s Executive Board shared: “Due to the high consumer interest, we made the decision …


Beyond Stack Burger_spread

© Beyond Meat

Studies & Numbers

Study: Using More Attractive Names for Plant-Based Dishes Significantly Increases Orders

A new study, conducted by the University of Queensland and published in the journal Food Quality and Preference, has found that giving plant-based dishes more attractive names on restaurant menus could boost sales. According to the research, using adjectives to describe the flavor, texture, and provenance of plant-based meals increases their appeal. For example, descriptions such as “juicy American burger” and “tasty Italian vegetable lasagna” are more appealing than “vegan burger” or “vegetable lasagna”. This effect can be amplified by using blander names for meat-based options. Affordable intervention The study notes that most restaurants currently take the opposite approach, with plant-based dishes named in ways that portray them as healthy but bland and meat-based dishes made to sound tastier. This leads to a lack of …


The Kraft Heinz Not Company Mac & cheese

© The Kraft Heinz Not Company

Products & Launches

The Kraft Heinz Not Company Unveils First Ever Plant-Based KRAFT Mac & Cheese with NotCheese

This morning, The Kraft Heinz Not Company LLC, a joint venture between NotCo and Kraft Heinz, announces the first-ever plant-based version of the iconic KRAFT Mac & Cheese in the United States. The KRAFT Mac & Cheese line, already a convenience food mainstay in North America, was extended with a vegan iteration back in 2021, which appears to have been limited to the Australian market. KRAFT also owns the Philadelphia brand which debuted a vegan cream cheese in 2022 and rolled out nationally across the US this year after the success of its trial. This new launch marks the first KRAFT Mac & Cheese produced with NotCo and featuring the company’s NotCheese. The company cites that the growth of health-conscious mac & cheese alternatives has …


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