Italian plant-based cheese startup Dreamfarm has secured €5 million in investment from accomplished food industry entrepreneurs Giampaolo Cagnin and Francesco Mutti.
The funding comes after the company achieved a “groundbreaking milestone” by developing a unique almond-based mozzarella alternative. Like conventional dairy mozzarella, the plant-based cheese is sold as a ball suspended in liquid. According to Dreamfarm, it is the first plant-based mozzarella to ever achieve government-certified liquid status.
The product also contains less than 1% saturated fat, far lower than conventional mozzarella and other plant-based alternatives. It is made from Italian almonds and has received a Nutriscore of A, the highest possible rating.
New facility and expansion
Some of the funding has already been used to establish a production facility in Sala Baganza, equipped with the machinery required to optimize Dreamfarm’s patented production process. This involves using proprietary selected cultures to ferment the almonds, which are then combined with simple ingredients like salt and agar agar to replicate the taste and texture of cheese.
The remainder of the investment will predominantly be used to expand Dreamfarm’s distribution channels in Italy and abroad, along with conducting further R&D to develop more products. The startup launched its first cheese alternatives — mozzarella and spreadable plant-based cheese — in May of this year.
“Typically Italian product”
Following the Italian government’s recent attempt to restrict plant-based food labelling in order to “protect” the country’s food heritage, Dreamfarm is leading the way in developing a new generation of sustainable and authentically Italian foods.
“Dreamfarm’s alternative to mozzarella is an innovative product with less than 1% saturated fat, making it appealing to consumers increasingly conscious of sustainability and nutritional profiles, but unwilling to compromise on the goodness of a typically Italian product,” said Dreamfarm CEO Giovanni Menozzi. “It’s a dream come true to create a venture like Dreamfarm right here and have entrepreneurs of this caliber as part of our team. The sector is experiencing significant growth, and we are confident that we can make a global impact with the type of products we have and will continue to develop.”