Dutch start-up Time-Travelling Milkman (TTM) produces creamy, sustainable fat ingredients for alt dairy products to improve taste profiles and make unsustainable palm and coconut oil use redundant. Having raised €550,000, the Wageningen-based startup will scale up production and accelerate its market entry.
“Alternative protein sources are abundant, but the importance of the fat element has been overlooked”
TTM creates unsaturated fat ingredients that are significantly healthier than the saturated fats currently used in many products. The startup has developed technology that extracts fat droplets from seeds, such as sunflower seeds, for sustainable production of fat that is texturally similar to milk.
A spin-off of Wageningen University & Research, TTM uses European seeds to improve sustainability and claims a significant improvement in mouthfeel and creaminess profiles. It believes itself to be well-positioned as a B2B supplier for the rapidly-growing alt dairy market, as fat has become a hot topic in the plant-based world, with many considering it the key to taking the industry to the next level.
“We are currently still using palm oil in many dairy alternatives. The palm oil must be transported from afar, and its production leads to deforestation of the tropical rainforests. Our technology allows us to produce small globules of fat (oleosomes) from the seeds of European sunflowers, thus offering a locally produced alternative,” explained Dimitris Karefyllakis, CEO and co-founder of TTM.
“Creaminess comes from fat, not protein. Alternative protein sources are abundant, but the importance of the fat element has been overlooked. Without this, there will be no protein transition,” he added.