Vegan protein alternative for dairy industry

If you have been following our latest stories you know that there are some major problems with the vegan milk alternatives. People love almond milk for all it delivers, but it turns out that the pendulum has swung out of favor for almond because of the destruction of the bees. So, we’ve been starting to try drinking rice and oat, but the kids don’t love it. Here is a recipe for making your own oat milk at home. Try to buy organic because of the pesticide glyphosate (or Roundup) used to grow oats. 

What is an industry to do? A startup from Israel called Yofix has started developing a vegan dairy-free alternative that can be used instead of dairy in products like yoghurt. Good news of an investment in the young company boosts the chance that the company will succeed. 

Vegan protein powder shakes have become an industry. The growth of vegan protein for adults, kids, pets, is part of the “Veganification” meta trend. Other examples of this meta trend include pea milk, vegan jerky, vegan collagen and vegan ramen.

Toeing to the trend, the company reports an A-round of investment from Muller, the Bel Group, and Liontree. A total of $2.5 million has gone into Yofix so far. Still a mere amount compared to what the soy-based drink Soylent has received — about $75 million USD to create a drink product as an alternative to eating. The idea started as a joke by a programmer in the US. You know, it’s really hard to bother eating when you are programming 15 hours a day. So Soylent to the rescue. Sign of the decay of our times. 

The Yofix line of products intended for the food industry might have a better mission –- to feed people who are dairy intolerant. At least in the interim when people are still expecting milk in their cereal or yoghurt for breakfast. We imagine in a few generations milk alternatives won’t be needed because there will be no more people who yearn for milk, if the vegans win. And in a way I hope they will. To diverge a bit more, the Impossible Burger is absolutely delicious though it smells too much like coconut oil when cooking. 

No one wants dirty labels

In short, I am rooting for Yofix: “Yofix offers a unique range of quality products, both in terms of flavor and texture,” says Benjamin Bugl, Managing Director of Muller. “With no artificial ingredients, its clean-label solution is a powerful differentiator for consumer awareness and acceptance. Combined with Yofix’ strong management team, this makes it an attractive investment opportunity for Muller.”

If you are wondering what Clean Label means (I did too), I found it online.

Clean label is a consumer driven movement, demanding a return to real food and transparency through authenticity. Food products containing natural, familiar, simple ingredients that are easy to recognize, understand, and pronounce. No artificial ingredients or synthetic chemicals. Yes! 

Making yoghurt with legumes!

Last year, Yofix launched a new generation of clean-label yogurt alternatives based on its zero-waste production process. The fermented formula is soy-free and composed of a short list of natural and highly nutritious ingredients, including oats, lentils, and sesame. Some of us worry about soy because of the potential for it to disrupt our endocrine system. You should never feed to it babies in formula this article points out. Plus it’s hidden everywhere as vegetable protein

This helps the lactose-intolerant and dairy-allergic population still accustomed to eating milk, or not willing to break the habits of milk eaters. It serves the growing vegan and flexitarian markets.

Another word for the day, flexitarian 

Flexitarian is used to describe a diet or a person who eats a mostly vegetarian diet, occasionally including meat. We used to call these people vegawarians. There is no standard agreement or definition of what this means; whether flexitarians eat meat once a day, once a week or just occasionally is up to the individual person.

Since the launch of its line of yogurt alternatives (see Yofix article here), the startup has also been awarded the final $100,000 grant from the PepsiCo 2018 Nutrition Greenhouse program.

Over the next few years the company plans on creating oat yogurt shakes (read here on how to make your own oat milk) alternative cheese, and frozen desserts.

Yofix was the first startup to be housed by The Kitchen Hub, the FoodTech incubator established five years ago by the Strauss Group. (Strauss led the first leg of the seed round back in 2017.)

The Kitchen Incubator, Strauss

“Yofix is one of the most promising startups in our portfolio,” says Jonathan Berger, CEO of The Kitchen, pictured right.

Other investors for this round in Yofix include Good Seed Ventures and HWA, as well as initial investors CPT Capital and VegInvest.

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