© Novozymes

Cultivated, Cell-Cultured & Biotechnology

Novozymes Launches New Clean-Label Biosolution for “Perfect Textures” in Plant-Based Meat

Novozymes (NASDAQ OMX: NZYM-B), one of the world’s largest providers of microbial technologies and enzymes, has launched Vertera®ProBite, a new clean-label product that the company claims delivers “perfect textures” in plant-based meat. The Danish company says that its new biosolution addresses consumers’ concerns about the texture and long ingredient lists of alt meat, ultimately encouraging more people to choose sustainable food options. A study conducted by the company shows that 95% of consumers think plant-based meat should improve. According to the 2023 Unmet Needs Discovery Survey by the Plant-Based Food Association, texture is the number one factor dissuading consumers from adopting plant-based alternatives. “Now’s the time to raise the (burger) bar and find perfect textures that consumers will love inside plants,” states Novozymes. Unlocking the potential …

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MATR Foods meat alternatives made via fungal fermentation

© MATR Foods

Fungi, Mushrooms & Mycelium

MATR Foods Uses Fungal Fermentation & Upcycled Veg to Make “New Generation” of Alt Meats

MATR Foods is a Danish startup producing sustainable meat alternatives via fungal fermentation. Made with just five ingredients — oats, split peas, lupin, beetroot, and potatoes — the products are described as a “new generation” of plant-based food. The ingredients used are organic, upcycled, and sourced from Danish farms. To transform them into meat alternatives, MATR adds natural fungi spores, which ferment the ingredients to give an umami flavor and firm bite. The resulting products are low in calories and high in fibre, with no additives. Success in European markets MATR’s product range includes plant-based steak, mince, and a block that can be cut into any shape. The meat alternatives have already launched at Sticks N’Sushi in the UK, Denmark, and Germany as part of …

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Simple Feast

© Simple Feast

Politics & Law

Danish Government’s Plant Fund Reports “Great Interest” With Over 100 Applications

At the end of 2021, the Danish government announced the launch of a 675 million DKK (€90 million) Plant Fund dedicated to plant-based development and promotion. After applications for the first round of grants closed on August 31 of this year, the Plant Fund has reported “great interest”, with 101 submissions received. Applicants requested a total of over 207 million DKK (€27.76 million); however, only 58.2 million DKK (€8.38 million) has been allocated for this year. Consequently, the Plant Fund will prioritise projects related to developing demand promotion, specifically those that: Increase the amount of plant-based food prepared in commercial kitchens and food service outlets Increase private consumption of plant-based food Increase export demand for Danish plant-based foods. However, other projects may still be able …

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Naturli' becomes plant-based partner of Brentford FC

© Brentford FC/Naturli'

Company News

Naturli’ Becomes Official Plant-Based Partner of Brentford Football Club

Danish brand Naturli’ has been named as the official plant-based partner of UK Premier League football club Brentford FC. As part of the collaboration, Naturli’ will offer product samples on match days; the brand previously handed out free plant-based ice creams at Brentford’s game against Manchester City in May. The partnership has been described as “a significant step towards introducing fans to the world of plant-based food and cuisine”. Through various engaging activities, Naturli’ hopes to challenge preconceptions about plant-based food and enhance the experience of Brentford fans. “We warmly welcome Naturli’ as the official plant-based food partner of Brentford FC. Their commitment to taste, quality, and sustainability mirrors our values, and we’re enthusiastic about introducing their offerings to our fans and the Brentford team,” …

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© Naturli

Milk- and Dairy Alternatives

Naturli’: Redefining Vegan Excellence with Unparalleled Taste and Quality

Naturli‘ has emerged as a true pioneer in the realm of vegan products, captivating consumers with its exceptional offerings. From the heart of Denmark, the flavorful journey began in 2017, taking even the most hardcore butter-loving Danes by storm. Within just a couple of years, Naturli’ Plant Butter successfully created an entirely new category, redefining the possibilities of plant-based alternatives. Today, Naturli’ has expanded its reach to over 40 countries, proving that vegan alternatives can delight even the most devoted butter enthusiasts. “Our secret ingredient for creating exceptional vegan products? Going all in on incredible taste that leaves our customers craving more!” shares Henrik, the visionary behind Naturli’s success. “At Naturli’, taste is the ultimate driving force. We pour our hearts and taste buds into …

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EXBERRY by GNT new vivid orange features in foods

© EXBERRY by GNT

Ingredients

This Week in the Plant-Based Food Color Scene: New All-Terrain Vivid Orange and Fruity Blends for Meat Alternatives

This week sees plant-based food color NPDs from EXBERRY and Oterra. F&B manufacturers will leverage a new vivid orange for the confectionary and snacks and new fruity blends for meat analogs that change hues when cooked. As the sustainability trend demands a shift to plant-based foods and cosmetics, color additives derived from plants and minerals are in the spotlight as alternatives to colors synthesized from petroleum raw materials or insect-derived carmine (a cochineal extract). Color additives enhance food’s appeal, making it attractive, appetizing, and informative: “If that looks good, it must taste good.” According to Oterra, color influences 50-85% of​ purchase decisions. Besides plant-based colors, biotechnology is also developing color alternatives with companies such as Danish Chromologics, which uses fungal fermentation to make pigments that …

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Tempty Foods

© Marlow Ingredients/Tempty Foods

Studies & Numbers

Denmark’s Financial Sector Urged to Shift Investment Focus from Animal Ag to Plant-Based Foods

A new report called The Role of the Financial Sector in the Transition towards a More Plant-Based Food System shows that Denmark’s financial sector lacks the objectives, knowledge, and ambition to invest in sustainable foods while it continues to support animal agriculture. The study, which benchmarked 27 of the largest banks in Denmark, says that the sector is not financing the plant-based industry or the agricultural production of plant-derived crops enough, neglecting the potential of plant-based diets to address sustainability in the food system. Recently released by the Vegetarian Society of Denmark, Greenpeace, Green Transition Denmark, and Animal Protection Denmark, the report is said to be the most significant review of Danish banks’ actions regarding food production. A thread to the future “It seems like many banks fail …

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Lurpak spreadable

©Arla Foods

Milk- and Dairy Alternatives

Arla to Launch Plant-Based Version of Lurpak Spreadable Butter

Danish-Swedish dairy cooperative Arla has announced that it plans to launch a plant-based version of Lurpak, its market-leading butter brand. A spreadable plant-based butter alternative will reportedly arrive on supermarket shelves next year, launching in both the UK and Denmark. It comes as figures show that 80% of Lurpak customers are over the age of 45, suggesting that some younger consumers may be opting for plant-based products instead. Lurpak remains the UK’s top-selling butter brand, with five times the sales of competitors such as Flora. However, sales figures fell by 4.7% last year compared to 2021, and the company is looking to cater to changing consumer tastes. According to Arla, the plant-based butter will be a premium product, matching the quality and price range of …

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Tempty Foods

© Marlow Ingredients/Tempty Foods

Fungi, Mushrooms & Mycelium

Denmark’s Tempty Foods Becomes First Brand to Use Mycoprotein by Marlow Ingredients

In April, Quorn’s parent company Marlow Foods announced that it was creating an ingredients division to make its mycoprotein available to other manufacturers. Now, Denmark’s Tempty Foods is set to become the first brand (other than Quorn itself) to use the protein. Tempty is already available in Denmark’s food service sector, and was the first Danish company to ever offer mycoprotein-based products. The partnership with Marlow will allow it to further expand and accelerate growth. “The introduction of Marlow mycoprotein into our products will give us a sustainable and competitive edge. It will also empower us to continue creating next-generation alternatives that focus on the key values of taste and nutrition, rather than imitating meat,” said Martina Lokajova, CEO and co-founder of Tempty Foods. “Huge …

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Secretary-General of the Vegetarian Society of Denmark, Rune-Christoffer

Secretary-General of the Vegetarian Society of Denmark, Rune-Christoffer, image supplied

Interviews

Vegetarian Society of Denmark: “We Believe That Every Plant-Based Meal Makes a Difference”

The Vegetarian Society of Denmark, or Dansk Vegetarisk Forening (DVF) is an association, originally founded by Danish doctors in 1896, that works to help businesses on their plant-based journey, offering advice on NPDs, product labelling, and even operating an incubator program for startups in the space. Secretary-General of the Vegetarian Society of Denmark, Rune-Christoffer, took the time to tell us more about the organization and its important work in Denmark which includes its greenwashing lawsuit against Danish Crown against the company’s “climate-controlled pigs”.  Please tell us about the Vegetarian Society of Denmark and what the organization stands for Our vision is a more sustainable, ethical,, and healthy world, that is better for animals, people, and planet. Our mission is to inform and inspire people, particularly …

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Meat-free popup

© Burger King

Fast Food

Burger King Opens Meat-Free Popups in Three Nordic Cities

Burger King has opened three meat-free popup restaurants in the cities of Oslo, Stockholm, and Copenhagen. Customers in the Norwegian, Swedish, and Danish capitals can now choose from a range of offerings made using The Vegetarian Butcher’s plant-based meat — including meat-free versions of classic options such as the Whopper and Chicken Royale. Some sauces containing eggs and dairy are still available, but customers can ask for these to be omitted to make their orders fully vegan. “By opening a restaurant that only serves plant-based and meat-free alternatives, we get a good opportunity to test products that are not yet part of our traditional menu for our further product development and innovation within the plant-based segment,” said Carsten Lambrecht, country manager for Burger King Denmark. …

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Chromologics red food color alternative

© Chromologics

Investments & Finance

Chromologics Raises €12.6M for Fungus Alternative to Carmine and Red 40 Food Colorings

Chromologics, a Danish biotech company developing fungal fermentation solutions for natural pigments, has raised €12.6 million in a seed round to commercialize its red food color alternative produced by a non-GMO fungus. The investment arm of the Danish ingredients company Döhler, Döhler Ventures and the capital firm Thia Ventures joined as new investors while existing investors backed the biotech company with an additional €7.1 million in equity in an extended round.  “We are thrilled to be able to accelerate our commercial development and welcome two new, strong investors, Doehler Ventures and Thia Ventures,” said Gerit Tolborg, CEO of Chromologics. Chromologics’ investors include Novo Holdings, Nordic Foodtech VC, Danmarks Eksport- og Investeringsfond, and Blue Horizon. Replacing carmine and Red 40 The Danish company was founded in …

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mycoprotein meatballs in tomato sauce

© Patrycja-stock.adobe.com

Fermentation

Danish Yummowia Project Leverages Syn Bio to Transform Yeast into Mycoprotein Meat

Yummowia, a project spin-off from the Technical University of Denmark led by Professor Irina Borodina to develop an engineered mycoprotein meat alternative from yeast, has been accepted into the Bio Studio accelerator program of the BioInnovation Institute (BII) in Denmark. Backed by a maximum grant of €1 million per year for up to three years, BII will assist the project with business development expertise, intellectual property support, access to an investor network, and wet lab and office infrastructure. BII’s Bio Studio program supports world-leading entrepreneurial principal investigators (PI) who want to translate innovative research ideas into new solutions to benefit planetary and human health. Additionally, BII, with its Venture Lab accelerator, helps grow and scale startups such as FÆRM, which is crafting the next generation of plant-based …

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brie cheese

© FÆRM

Cheese Alternatives

FÆRM: Mimicking Dairy Fermentation to Craft the Next Generation of Plant-Based Cheese

FÆRM is a Danish food tech startup using food science and traditional cheesemaking techniques to craft the next generation of plant-based cheese. The company claims its animal-free cheese is made with clean-label ingredients and boasts an authentic cheese flavor. Founded in 2020 by Andrea Donau, Mikkel Dupont, and Anna Gundorph, FÆRM has designed a new patented technology that mimics traditional dairy fermentation using rennet and cultures such as lactic acid bacteria. The technology ferments legume-based plant matrices to transform them into cheese without using additives, colorants, or flavorings.  Achieving the impossible According to FÆRM, its R&D team has accomplished a feat not many companies have been able to achieve: making soy milk coagulate like cow’s milk. “Through research, stubbornness, and countless tests, we achieved the …

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Simple Feast

© Simple Feast

Sustainability / Environment

Danish Climate Council Recommends Meat Tax & Replacing Two-Thirds of Meat With Plants

The Danish Climate Council, an independent adviser to Denmark’s government, has recommended a reduction in meat consumption to help the country meet its climate goals. The council said that two-thirds of the meat consumed by Danes should be replaced by plant-based foods, and suggested that the products with the highest carbon footprint should be taxed. A 33% tax is recommended for beef, which is one of the most high-emission foods. The advice was published as part of an annual review, aimed at helping Denmark achieve its legally binding target of a 70% reduction in carbon emissions by 2030 (compared to 1990 levels). According to the Danish Climate Council, annual emissions could be cut by up to 3.9 million tons of CO2-equivalents if everyone reduced their …

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naturli's milk-free zone vegan block

© Naturli'

Milk- and Dairy Alternatives

Naturli’s Milk-Free Spreadable and Vegan Block Win Superior Taste Award

Danish organic plant-based food producer Naturli’ announces it has won the Superior Taste Award for two of its milk-free butter products: Spreadable and Vegan Block. Made with rapeseed, coconut, shea nuts, and almonds, Naturli butter is a favourite alternative to dairy butters and spreads among both consumers and professional taste experts. Taste is everything The International Taste Institute helps consumer F&B companies improve the quality of their products and increase their sales with the renowned Superior Taste Award certification. “Taste is everything! More than 200 professional taste experts tried our products for this test and found them worthy of a star!” the company posted on social media. Naturli Foods has been producing plant-based alternatives since 1988, with plant-based versions of drinks, breakfast products, meat-free products, and spreads …

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Geranium dish

© Geranium

Gastronomy & Food Service

Copenhagen’s Geranium Named Best Restaurant in the World After Going Meat-Free

Chef Rasmus Kofoed of the 3-star Michelin restaurant Geranium, decided to remove meat from his menu at the end of 2021, with the change coming into effect this January. This summer, Geranium was named best restaurant in the world. Founded in 2007 by Kofoed and Søren Ledet and located in a Copenhagen football stadium, the Copenhagen fine dining spot was awarded second place in the list in 2021. Following the menu changes, it was named The Best Restaurant in Europe and The World’s Best Restaurant 2022. The reservation list takes bookings three months in advance and reservations are booked within minutes, according to Tasting Table. “The menu is a reflection of myself, who I am and how I am evolving as a chef and as …

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service Alchemist courtesy GFI

Image: Søren Gammelmark / @gammelmarkphoto

Gastronomy & Food Service

Scientists to Develop New Seafood by Fusing Fungi and Seaweed With Alchemist Michelin Chefs

The Good Food Institute (GFI) is funding a team of scientists to work with chefs at Copenhagen’s two Michelin-starred restaurant Alchemist to create a new seafood by growing fungi on seaweed. The project, headed by Dr Leonie Jahn from the Technical University of Denmark and Diego Prado, head of research at Alchemist, will see the chefs experiment with fungi to eventually create whole-cut seafood by using the fungi to ferment seaweed. If successful, the product may be sold at the restaurant and could go on to be widely available for purchase. Dr Leonie Johanna Jahn commented: “I think there’s huge potential here – there aren’t a lot of seafood alternatives on the market but there’s certainly a need for them. This is also an area …

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Danish Plantbased Business Association

Image source: Danish Plantbased Business Association social media

Politics & Law

Danish Government Launches “Plant Fund” to Invest $100M in Plant-Based Foods 

The Danish government will invest over $100 million into a new ‘Plantefonden’ – or Plant Fund – to promote climate-friendly plant-based foods. The Danish Plantbased Business Association has been named on the board of the Plant Fund, an initiative of the Danish Agency for Agriculture. A historic amount of DKK 675 million (100 million USD) has been set aside until 2030 for the Plant Fund, going exclusively to plant-based foods. The Plant Fund is a central initiative in the agricultural agreement in the Danish government, as it looks to embrace the climate benefits and increased food security of the plant-based economy.  All political parties but one in Denmark have got behind the landmark agreement. The Danish Plant-Based Foods Association has pushed hard for the fund …

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Mikael Eydt Beyond Leather

Mikael Eydt ©Beyond Leather

Interviews

Beyond Leather: “Companies Who Do Not Understand Sustainability & Transparency Will Be Left Behind and the Ones Who Do Will Take Over”

With animal-based materials finally falling out of favour in the fashion world, Beyond Leather has positioned itself as a leader in the rapidly growing plant-based leather sector, creating innovative products using waste materials with a focus on apple waste upcycled from the juice and cider industries. “I hope that we can lead the industry into a transparent system that makes it easy for people to buy eco-friendly products and navigate away from false promises” Established in 2017, the Danish startup announced a €1.1 million seed funding round last year and was also the winner of the Clim@ 2020 competition, an event that rewards startups demonstrating climate impact. In this well overdue Q&A, we caught up with Beyond Leather CEO and Co-Founder Mikael Eydt to discuss …

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