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Op Ed: Marissa Bronfman On Women Leading the Way in Alt Seafood

Marissa Bronfman is a serial entrepreneur, speaker, and business advisor to food founders and impact investors. She is passionate about helping people build, grow, support, and invest in woman-owned and plant-based businesses and is excited to be helping accelerate the alternative seafood space.   Inspired and encouraged by the number of women leading in the space, Marissa believes “there’s never been a better time to start, scale, or invest in a vegan seafood company”.   Alternative Seafood: A New Wave of Opportunity Led by Women By Marissa Bronfman It’s a hugely exciting time for seafood analogs, a relatively small but fast-growing category of alternative protein, with many new companies and technological developments being led by women from around the world. At a time when our …


Vegan Cheese Ownder

©Eat UNRestricted

Food & Beverage

Eat UNRestricted: A Black-Owned Cheese Maker Expanding the Dairy-Free Market

When Dianna King entered college to study electrical engineering, she promised herself she would one day start a plant-based food business. After graduating the Georgia Institute of Technology, King worked hard to do just that, eventually launching Eat UNRestricted -a plant-based cheese company on a mission to make healthy and delicious vegan food more accessible, reports Black Enterprise.  Eat UNRestricted offers a range of products it describes as “Vegan cheese with Southern soul.” The company’s products include Better Cheddar, a cheese sauce made from carrots, potatoes, aquafaba (chickpea brine), spices, and seasonings. Sold in 9 oz and 12 oz jars, Better Cheddar is available in Original, Garlic and Chipotle varieties, and is meant to be used for cooking, spreading, dipping and snacking. The company also …


Mind Blown New Crab Cakes

©Mind Blown

Company News

Mind Blown Seafood Expands Plant-Based Crab Cakes and More into US Food Service

Mind Blown by the Plant-Based Seafood Co. announces the expansion of its products into US food service through several major distributors, including Sysco, US Foods, Fancy Foods Inc., and Webstaurant. The brand’s new crab cakes will now be available in new markets across New York, New Jersey, and Connecticut, as well as to operators nationwide via Webstaurant.  According to Mind Blown, the expansion means the crab cakes will also be featured on more restaurant menus, such as All Surf No Turf in Clifton, NJ.  Strong growth Mind Blown debuted its plant-based Crab Cakes, Dusted Shrimp and Scallops at all Sprouts Farmers Markets locations in July. The rollout followed two years of strong growth for the brand, which has gained the backing of celebrity chefs like Spike …


Mirjam Walser

Mirjam Walser © Vegan Business School

Startups, Accelerators & Incubators

Berlin’s Vegan Business School Announces Second Round

To start your own business and promote veganism in the process is a dream for many that is not always easy to realise. The Vegan Business School, founded in Berlin this year, aims to make it easier. The Vegan Business School offers four-month live online courses where participants learn how to build and start a vegan business. Supporting women The Vegan Business School provides the necessary knowledge and support to get your own vegan business off the ground. The focus is primarily on women; Mirjam Walser, who is in contact with numerous founders through the organisation of vegan startup events, knows that women in particular have many doubts when it comes to entrepreneurship. The programme is therefore not only about learning the basics of entrepreneurship, …


Heura partners with Barca Women's Football Team

© Heura/FC Barcelona

Facts & Figures

Heura Becomes Sponsor for Barça Women’s Football Team

Spanish alt-meat brand Heura has entered a three-year partnership with FC Barcelona to sponsor the Barça Women’s Football Team. The collaboration aims to “promote more sustainable and nutritious foods for athletes and fans”. Heura’s culinary, nutrition and R&D teams will work with FC Barcelona experts to maximise nutritional performance and help the public understand the benefits of plant-based diets. The partnership will begin at the Joan Gamper Cup on August 23, where the Barça women will play against Montpellier. For the first time, plant-based options such as the Heura Chicken Sandwich and Heura Sausage will be served at the stadium. Footballers and alt-meat Elsewhere in the world, other football teams have partnered with alt-meat companies. In the UK, Quorn recently launched a plant-based pie in …




Algae, Microalgae & Seaweed

Women’s EURO Final: Just Eat & UEFA to Introduce “Disappearing” Seaweed Food Packaging

Just Eat and UEFA announce that, in collaboration with sustainable packaging pioneer Notpla, biodegradable seaweed-coated food packaging will be introduced at the UEFA Women’s EURO Final at Wembley Stadium on 31st July, marking a first for a major football match. The packaging that will be served at the Women’s Final is home-compostable and will biodegrade within 4-6 weeks, just like a piece of fruit, according to Just Eat. With the cool tagline, “We make packaging disappear”, the London-based company produces a variety of biodegradable solutions made from seaweed and plant material that disappears naturally. Notpla raised £10 million in Series A last December with the funds going towards the growth of its manufacturing facility and to develop new innovations, such as a transparent flexible film …




Sweets & Snacks

Latina Women-Owned 2FIT BRANDS Launches Healthy Vegan Brownie Bites

2FIT BRANDS, based in Virginia USA, has introduced a third healthy snack to its popular product line. Brownie Bites are vegan, gluten-free, and low sugar. The healthy treats join the current product portfolio including Chocolate Peanut Butter, Vanilla Crunch and a 2FIT sample pack.    According to Colombian-born entrepreneurs Nathalia Rojas and Marcela Charry, 2FITBRANDS is one of the fastest-growing healthy snack food firms in the US, progressing in three years from production in their home kitchens to Amazon sales that increased 830% YOY last year. The vegan snack company launched in 2019 with Vanilla Crunch and Chocolate Peanut Butter varieties. “People are loving the products and you can find our Chocolate Peanut Butter and Vanilla Crunch Protein Bars at LifeTime health clubs around the …


Isabel Fernandez_Heura R_D

Isabel Fernandez © Heura

Guest Posts

Heura’s Lead R&D Scientist Isa Fernández Farrés: “It is Everyone’s Responsibility to Address Gender Bias”

My scientific background has been instrumental in developing new technological solutions or even improving existing ones. And by scientific background, I am not referring to the acquired knowledge during a PhD, which is the understanding of a narrow scientific field, but rather the tools I learned by practising science throughout 10+ years in research, both in academia and in industry.  Learning how to learn These tools are the ability to make testable predictions and the most powerful one for me is “learning how to learn”, which I constantly use to broaden my scientific knowledge in order to maximise technological outcomes. Balancing depth and breadth of expertise is the key to achieving technological impact.  And I found that learning the basics of different scientific fields was …


Eclipse Dairy-Free Ice Cream

©Eclipse Foods

Food & Beverage

Eclipse Foods to Grow Retail Footprint by 35% With Expansion Into 130+ Stores

Eclipse Foods, creators of dairy-like plant-based ice cream, announces the brand will expand to over 130 US stores, increasing its retail presence by 35% in March.  Building on last year’s expansion, which saw Eclipse debut in Whole Foods Markets throughout Northern California, the new rollout will bring Eclipse’s acclaimed ice cream to new stores including: Safeway Albertsons, Safeway Vons, and Safeway Pavilions (Southern California), Nugget Market (Northern California), and Harmon’s (Utah.) Best-selling flavors such as Cookie Butter, Dark Side of the Spoon, Mint Chip and Caramel Butter Pecan will be sold at all of the new locations, the company says. “Impossible Foods of Ice Cream” The rollout continues a path of rapid growth for Eclipse,  which makes premium plant-based ice cream that is indistinguishable from …


So Delicious Wondermilk Ice Cream Pints

©So Delicious

Products & Launches

So Delicious Preparing to Launch “Dairy-Like” Wondermilk Ice Cream

Coming this month, So Delicious Dairy Free is releasing Wondermilk ice cream pints, novelty cones and milks that are designed to taste like real dairy.  Using new technology that emulates the precise flavor and texture properties of animal-based dairy, So Delicious – a subsidiary of Danone North America – wants to appeal to consumers who avoid plant-based milks because of taste.  The Wondermilk ice cream line features pints in five flavors: Vanilla, Chocolate Cocoa Chip, Strawberry, Cookies & Creme and Buttery Pecan. Wondermilk will also debut specialty sundae cones in two flavors: Vanilla Peanut Sundae and Salted Caramel Sundae.  Beginning in February, Wondermilk’s dairy-free milk beverage line will launch in whole fat and 2% reduced-fat varieties.  De-coding the taste of dairy Unlike most plant-based milks, …



Investments & Finance

Yumi Baby Food Reveals It Raised $67 M Entirely From Woman Investors

Yumi, makers of organic plant-based baby food, says the brand’s recent $67 million Series B funding round was led entirely by female investors and women-led firms, according to Food Business News.  As part of the raise, Yumi structured the investment as an SPV (special purpose vehicle) to allow more than 70 woman investors to purchase shares at a 20% discount. Notable participants included Goldman Sachs executive Christina Minnis, City National Bank CEO Kelly Coffey, Day One Ventures founder Masha Drokova, and Nasdaq executive Lauren Dillard. Spotlighting social equality The investment round was introduced to draw attention to persistent gender inequality issues within venture capitalism and equity finance, says Yumi. According to the Pew Research Center, women in the US earned only 84% of what men earned …


Fairs & Events

VWS to Bring Back World’s Only Future of Food Job Networking Fair

The Vegan Women Summit (VWS), a media and events organization dedicated to empowering women, is set to host the world’s only future of food job networking series, VWS Connect, on January 26th. Impressively, over 2,000 jobseekers have connected through VWS Connect since its launch in February 2021. Building the future of food The summit – described by VWS as “the world’s only job networking series dedicated to mission-driven employers building the future of food”, will feature leaders from across the plant-based industry including The Every Company (formerly Clara Foods), Miyoko’s, Ripple Foods, Next Gen Foods, Finless Foods, BIOMILQ, and more. The virtual event takes place on January 26th, showcasing employers from around the world with vegan job roles across North America, Europe, and Asia. According to VWS, …


Vegan Delights

© Sofia Audrey Johnson

Food & Beverage

Vegan Delights: Sweden’s 100% Vegan Wonka-Inspired Chocolate Factory

Inspired by Willy Wonka, entrepreneur Anahita Vazvan has opened the doors to her family chocolate factory in Sweden, called Vegan Delights, where customers can meet the female-led company and enjoy a huge variety of imaginative vegan treats. The company’s initial vision “was to create vegan treats that didn’t feel like a compromise and that dream was turned into reality”, one that is ethically driven and involves a diverse team of coworkers. Vegan Delights has most notably developed a vegan Snickers called ‘Vegickers’, which is the company’s bestseller and has already become a firm customer favourite. In 2019, confectionery giant Mars, producer of the conventional snickers bar, became the first major confectionery company to launch a veganised line with Galaxy Vegan. Following the ongoing trend for …


Company News

To a Forward-Looking Future: 67% of Blue Horizon’s Investment Team is Now Female

Blue Horizon today announces the appointment of a new female Partner and two female Directors to its investment team. In five years, Blue Horizon has grown to 28 employees, including nine in the investment team which is now 67% female. In this time, the company has raised more than $850 million and invested in over 50 companies spanning agriculture, biology and technology. As we reported last year, research done by Jenny Stojkovic, founder of the Vegan Women Summit, found that female-led companies performed 63% better than all-male founding teams, and businesses founded by women deliver twice as much per dollar invested than those founded by men. The company states that the three new female leaders join “at a time of increasing interest in sustainable food …


Jennifer Stojkovic VWS

Jennifer Stojkovic © VWS


VWS: “The Longer We Leave the Talent and Expertise Of Women On the Table, the Longer We Leave Animals On the Table”

On a mission to inspire, educate and empower future and rising female leaders in food tech, Vegan Women Summit (VWS) is an events and media organization building a global community of strong and ambitious female-identifying change makers.  Founded by tech and communication leader Jennifer Stojkovic, Vegan Women Summit was born as Jennifer became aware of the inequities facing female founders in the food tech industry, blending her passion for change in the food system with her experience and network in Silicon Valley. We had the chance to speak with Jennifer – following her recent epic trip to Mount Kilimanjaro – to get to know more about VWS and its roles and goals in the plant-based sphere.  What is the mission and vision of the Vegan Women Summit?  …



Clive’s Purely Plants: “Being Mission-Aligned With Our Investor Was Non-Negotiable. This is an Exciting New Chapter For Clive’s and We Can’t Wait to Get Started”

Founded in 1986, Clive’s Purely Plants is a household name in the UK, known for its range of hugely popular pies which became 100% vegan last year. Last week the Devon brand announced news of its significant investment from Veg Capital, the plant-based investment firm created by Veganuary founder Matthew Glover. Amid the flurry of growth and expansion plans, with a sales target of £10M for the coming years, Esther Pearson, Managing Director of Clive’s, took a moment to talk with vegconomist about her own plant-based business journey, female empowerment, and the exciting times ahead for Clive’s Purely Plants. Can you tell us more about your personal journey to becoming vegan? I haven’t always been vegan. I grew up in South Africa where eating meat …


women of color mixed ethnicity / female founders

© Rob -

Startups, Accelerators & Incubators

Women and Founders of Color Invited to Apply For $100K Angel Fund

Vegan Investors, a global syndicate of angel investors, invites vegan startups led by women and founders of color to its Fall Showcase on September 15th where they will have the opportunity to exhibit products and services to a broad audience of investors. “Fueled by a commitment to reverse the limited opportunity for talented female, black and Latino CEOs” Six to ten semi-finalists will be selected to present to the group of angels throughout July and August, then three to five finalists will earn a spot to present at the Virtual Showcase on September 15th. The finalists will be announced at the end of August.  The screening committee has committed to investing at least $50K to $100K into the finalists. “Fueled by a commitment to reverse …