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MeliBio and Narayan Foods to Launch Vegan Honey at ALDI-Owned Hofer Stores Through Private Label Deal

MeliBio, a US-based producer of vegan honey, has partnered with organic food producer Narayan Foods to launch bee-free honey at ALDI-owned Hofer stores in Europe.

The private-label deal will see the plant-based honey sold under the name Vegan Hanny as part of Hofer’s Just Veg! brand. The product will initially roll out in Austria and Switzerland from this month, before expanding into other European countries.

“We’ve been overwhelmed by the demand from customers all over the world”

The agreement between MeliBio and Narayan is valued at more than $10 million over four years. The two companies first partnered in 2022 to launch the bee-free honey at 75,000 European retail stores under the name Better Foodie Vegan H*ney; this collaboration is still underway, with the Vegan H*ney set to roll out at UK stores this month.

© Better Foodie/Narayan Foods

“Innovation, quality and execution”

As MeliBio CEO and co-founder Darko Mandich explained to vegconomist last month, conventional honey is increasingly facing scrutiny for its negative ecological impact. Honey is often produced by managed non-native bees, which compete with wild native bees and reduce their diversity. Furthermore, managed bees can pass diseases to wild bees.

MeliBio uses precision fermentation and plant science to create a product that is said to be identical in taste and consistency to honey. In March of last year, the company launched its bee-free honey in the US under the brand Mellody. MeliBio then received the Food Replacement Innovation Of The Year award at the AgTech Breakthrough Awards in August.

“At MeliBio, we pride ourselves on our ability to pioneer and deliver product innovation, quality, and execution, and the partnership with Narayan has allowed us to accelerate and expand our international market presence with speed and a level of care that is unmatched anywhere else,” said Mandich. “We’ve been overwhelmed by the demand from customers all over the world for our sustainable, bee-friendly products, and we’re glad that working with ALDI will enable European consumers to enjoy what is truly the best honey available on the market.”

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