This Week in Food: Plant-based moves East and a major eco buy-in from the corporate sector?

This Week in Food: Plant-based moves East and a major eco buy-in from the corporate sector?

By
September 25, 2020

The next major Beyond / Impossible competitor will come from the East. I can feel it, quite literally - in my gut.

For the past week, I've been in Istanbul re-exploring the many varieties of foods my home country has to offer - Kebab(s), yayla çorbası, tavuklu pilav - all delicious staple dishes. And I realised two things:

  1. Turkish food is an all-around crowd-pleaser (yes, I'm biased).
  2. Turkish food is ripe for plant-based disruption and is currently far underserved.


The same can likely be said for countries in the Balkans; Georgia, Poland, Croatia coming to mind. If entrepreneurs in these countries were to see the recent $70M raise by Hong Kong-based Green Monday - dubbed "Asia's answer to Beyond Meat" as a spur of inspiration, we might be seeing some serious plant-based challenger brands emerging from this region with flavors that feel a little more familiar to the childhoods of mine, and many others.

I'll continue doing some more 'research' into this - but here's a nice intro-read for the curious.

Enough speculating, back to our regular This Week In Food.

The Digest

♻️ Eco drive: One of the biggest producers in the world, PepsiCo, has pledged to source 100% renewable electricity across its entire operation by 2030, the equivalent of taking half a million cars off the road every year! Nespresso has pledged that every cup of its coffee will be carbon neutral by 2022, with the launch of new capsules made from 80% recycled aluminium. Walmart will be cutting 60,000 pounds of annual plastic waste by switching to an innovative edible produce peel for its cucumbers, and has also announced its goal to produce zero emissions by 2040! Plant-based brand Alpro is committing to sustainability with a goal of ‘zero carbon, zero water and zero waste’ by 2025. 👏

🍄 Sustainable packaging: Alcohol-free spirit brand Seedlip has been experimenting with mushroom-based secondary packaging which is home compostable in just 45 days, as a more sustainable option than cardboard.

🍭 Give me some sugar(cane): Israeli foodtech startup W-Cycle is upcycling sugarcane waste into plastic-free packaging which is fully compostable and can be used for greasy, hot or wet foods. Game changer for the ready meal world.

💪 Functional foods: There’s a strong shift towards consumers wanting food and drink to work for them, but it’s no longer just sports consumers who are making the move towards functional products. Now, ‘lifestyle’ consumers are also looking for health benefits alongside perfect taste and convenience, and this article explains why they’re so trendy.

🔬 One of the biggest topics of the moment is fermentation; discover 8 things you need to know about the advancements in fermentation for the development of alternative protein sources, and how it’s about to explode.

🕵️ Detectives: In the fight against food fraud, researchers in Denmark have developed methods to detect adulteration in vanilla and black pepper. Both commodity ingredients, they can be falsified for economic gain, but at the expense of producers and consumers alike.

🥃 Pour up: Similar good news for whisky lovers, as Scottish physicists have developed a laser tool to detect counterfeit products, without opening a single bottle.

🌱 Urban farming: Nine urban farms in Singapore have been awarded a government grant of $29.3M to boost local food production and food security, to protect the city from global supply chain disruptions. Dive deeper into the world of vertical farms in our latest FoodHack+ Trends.

🥩 Meat sweats: Meat producers the world over are concerned as Impossible Foods reveal that 92% of sales of their Impossible burger come directly at the expense of animal meat products. This plus the news this week that they’re also expanding into Canada’s fast casual dining market means that world domination is imminent. It’s probably why three of the world’s biggest pork producers have released vegan meats this week.

🐣 A proposed new rule by USDA will allow poultry factories to process diseased chicken for human consumption. Poor timing, given the current global pandemic began with a disease transferred from an animal source. With this news it might be time to think about going vegan, although apparently plant-based consumers spend 61% more in retail, so maybe I can’t afford it…

🌱 Plant-based dining: Given the above, and the fact that legendary rapper Snoop Dogg is switching to a more plant-based diet, you can bet that more will follow. Target is making it easy to go more green with its launch of plant-based burgers, part of a 600-item range launch. And for dessert, you can now whip up vegan soft serve at home with Elmhurst’s new launch!

🥙 Takeover The LIVEKINDLY Collective acquire 100% of German plant meat producer, LikeMeat, a company that was founded in 2013 and today its products can be found across ten countries - serving up plant-versions of favorites like kebab, sausage and chicken. The investment fund already had a 51% stake in the company as of February this year and are now eyeing a US expansion with the brand.

🍂 It’s now officially autumn, the season of all things pumpkin-spiced, so here’s a handy guide on enjoying the Fall flavours at Starbucks, while staying plant-based, if that’s your bag.

🛒 Supermarket retailer ASDA has just become the first in the UK to launch 100% vegan aisles, and is adding more than 100 new plant-based products to its range due to rising consumer demand.

Sugar reduction: it’s the bad boy of ingredients, with consumers more aware than ever of sugar content and overconsumption. Scientists and producers are innovating to reduce the sugars within foods, but it’s a tricky business.

📈 What's up: Checkout-free - For anyone who’s shopped in an Amazon Go store, you have to agree that it’s the future. No lines, you simply walk out with your groceries and your total is automatically deducted from your Amazon account. Nifty. And apparently it could be worth $37.7 billion in sales volume, plus a whole host of other efficiencies.

📉 What's down: On the flip side, though, some wholesale grocers are stealing business from Amazon as shoppers stock up on no-frills essentials through the pandemic.

🍕 Slice There's a platform aggregating 14,000 independent pizzerias and inching its way towards disrupting the pizza franchise model as it leverages its economies of scale to help local independents thrive in the online age with a comprehensive marketing, technology, branding and advertising playbook.

🍞 Bread & Jam 2.0 is the essential virtual conference for ambitious food & drink brands 🍞


If you’re looking to fast-track your business, learn from peers, connect with investors (for £150k investment) and buyers (from the UK’s top retailers) this is the conference you need.

Join from Oct 19 to 22 and use the promo code FOODHACK20 for 20% off

Get your tickets here

[Sponsored]

New In Funding

🐷 Hong Kong’s Green Monday has raised $70M this week for R&D and global expansion, and has been named on Fortune 2020’s ‘Change the World’ list. Having become Asia’s biggest wholesale plant-based product distributor, they’ve also developed a broad portfolio of meat alternatives. But the really cool part is the Green Monday Foundation, which advocates for the adoption of a ‘greener’ lifestyle, with a focus on sustainability and vegetarianism. Way to practise what you preach!

🍔 Mosa Meat closed a massive $55M Series B led by Blue Horizon Corporation. The funds will be used to to extend its current pilot production facility, develop an industrial sized production line, expand its team and work to achieve regulatory approval to serve up cultured meat to consumers in Europe.  

🍴Indonesian cloud kitchen startup Yummy Corporation raised $12M in series B funding. Their main edge is that they offer fully-managed location and kitchen operation services as well as kitchen facilities, so brands who want to meet the rising food delivery demand in South-East Asia can get the whole package.

☁️ San Francisco-based supply chain streaming company Silo raised $9M. Their cloud-based platform aims to streamline the food supply chain to reduce food waste.

🐔 Daring raises $8M to expand its plant-based chicken pieces production. Made from soy protein, sunflower oil and a spice blend, their products have a ‘clean label’, which is something about which consumers are becoming more concerned.


🚚 Helping independent grocers offer online ordering and same day delivery, Homesome raised $6.7M to expand its services. Its automation of store POS ensures inventory is around 95% accurate, so customers aren’t disappointed with store pick stock issues.

🧫 We talked about cultured meat last week, and it’s getting even bigger as UC Davis receives a $3.5M government grant for research and development in this area.

📦 Zero Grocery raises $3M for its plastic-free grocery delivery service. Food is bought in wholesale and repackaged for delivery to consumers, then empty containers are collected, sanitised and reused.

🔬 Aquatic biopesticide producer Sundew closes $1.7M seed round to fund development of biological treatments which are effective, affordable and environmentally benign.

🍱 Meallogix closed a $1.25M round of seed funding this week. Its software promises to take over the admin associated with running a meal prep or meal kit company. As this market saw huge growth when restaurants were shut, we foresee even more as consumers continue to embrace in-home dining through the next six months.

🦘 Australia’s first plant-based halloumi startup, Hello Friend, has launched a crowdfunder this week, in the hope of scaling up its distribution, growing its online store and maybe even going international.

Ocean friendly snacks and business4good

Meet this week top 5 product featured on FoodHack Discovery:

1️. KOA - turning the cocoa fruit into social impact and meaningful joy
2️. Daffee - A coffee-like, 100% caffeine-free, natural energy booster
3️. Nibs etc. - Snacks from ingredients that normally get thrown away.
4️. Lunchbox - A collection of powerful digital marketing and ordering tools for restaurants.
5️. 12 Tides - Ocean-friendly snacks made with kelp from regenerative ocean farms.

Have a product you'd like to get featured? Fill out the form here 🔍

Written by

Become a FoodHack+ member to get unlimited access

  • Read Unlimited Articles
  • Access Member Directory
  • Get Event Discounts

The next major Beyond / Impossible competitor will come from the East. I can feel it, quite literally - in my gut.

For the past week, I've been in Istanbul re-exploring the many varieties of foods my home country has to offer - Kebab(s), yayla çorbası, tavuklu pilav - all delicious staple dishes. And I realised two things:

  1. Turkish food is an all-around crowd-pleaser (yes, I'm biased).
  2. Turkish food is ripe for plant-based disruption and is currently far underserved.


The same can likely be said for countries in the Balkans; Georgia, Poland, Croatia coming to mind. If entrepreneurs in these countries were to see the recent $70M raise by Hong Kong-based Green Monday - dubbed "Asia's answer to Beyond Meat" as a spur of inspiration, we might be seeing some serious plant-based challenger brands emerging from this region with flavors that feel a little more familiar to the childhoods of mine, and many others.

I'll continue doing some more 'research' into this - but here's a nice intro-read for the curious.

Enough speculating, back to our regular This Week In Food.

The Digest

♻️ Eco drive: One of the biggest producers in the world, PepsiCo, has pledged to source 100% renewable electricity across its entire operation by 2030, the equivalent of taking half a million cars off the road every year! Nespresso has pledged that every cup of its coffee will be carbon neutral by 2022, with the launch of new capsules made from 80% recycled aluminium. Walmart will be cutting 60,000 pounds of annual plastic waste by switching to an innovative edible produce peel for its cucumbers, and has also announced its goal to produce zero emissions by 2040! Plant-based brand Alpro is committing to sustainability with a goal of ‘zero carbon, zero water and zero waste’ by 2025. 👏

🍄 Sustainable packaging: Alcohol-free spirit brand Seedlip has been experimenting with mushroom-based secondary packaging which is home compostable in just 45 days, as a more sustainable option than cardboard.

🍭 Give me some sugar(cane): Israeli foodtech startup W-Cycle is upcycling sugarcane waste into plastic-free packaging which is fully compostable and can be used for greasy, hot or wet foods. Game changer for the ready meal world.

💪 Functional foods: There’s a strong shift towards consumers wanting food and drink to work for them, but it’s no longer just sports consumers who are making the move towards functional products. Now, ‘lifestyle’ consumers are also looking for health benefits alongside perfect taste and convenience, and this article explains why they’re so trendy.

🔬 One of the biggest topics of the moment is fermentation; discover 8 things you need to know about the advancements in fermentation for the development of alternative protein sources, and how it’s about to explode.

🕵️ Detectives: In the fight against food fraud, researchers in Denmark have developed methods to detect adulteration in vanilla and black pepper. Both commodity ingredients, they can be falsified for economic gain, but at the expense of producers and consumers alike.

🥃 Pour up: Similar good news for whisky lovers, as Scottish physicists have developed a laser tool to detect counterfeit products, without opening a single bottle.

🌱 Urban farming: Nine urban farms in Singapore have been awarded a government grant of $29.3M to boost local food production and food security, to protect the city from global supply chain disruptions. Dive deeper into the world of vertical farms in our latest FoodHack+ Trends.

🥩 Meat sweats: Meat producers the world over are concerned as Impossible Foods reveal that 92% of sales of their Impossible burger come directly at the expense of animal meat products. This plus the news this week that they’re also expanding into Canada’s fast casual dining market means that world domination is imminent. It’s probably why three of the world’s biggest pork producers have released vegan meats this week.

🐣 A proposed new rule by USDA will allow poultry factories to process diseased chicken for human consumption. Poor timing, given the current global pandemic began with a disease transferred from an animal source. With this news it might be time to think about going vegan, although apparently plant-based consumers spend 61% more in retail, so maybe I can’t afford it…

🌱 Plant-based dining: Given the above, and the fact that legendary rapper Snoop Dogg is switching to a more plant-based diet, you can bet that more will follow. Target is making it easy to go more green with its launch of plant-based burgers, part of a 600-item range launch. And for dessert, you can now whip up vegan soft serve at home with Elmhurst’s new launch!

🥙 Takeover The LIVEKINDLY Collective acquire 100% of German plant meat producer, LikeMeat, a company that was founded in 2013 and today its products can be found across ten countries - serving up plant-versions of favorites like kebab, sausage and chicken. The investment fund already had a 51% stake in the company as of February this year and are now eyeing a US expansion with the brand.

🍂 It’s now officially autumn, the season of all things pumpkin-spiced, so here’s a handy guide on enjoying the Fall flavours at Starbucks, while staying plant-based, if that’s your bag.

🛒 Supermarket retailer ASDA has just become the first in the UK to launch 100% vegan aisles, and is adding more than 100 new plant-based products to its range due to rising consumer demand.

Sugar reduction: it’s the bad boy of ingredients, with consumers more aware than ever of sugar content and overconsumption. Scientists and producers are innovating to reduce the sugars within foods, but it’s a tricky business.

📈 What's up: Checkout-free - For anyone who’s shopped in an Amazon Go store, you have to agree that it’s the future. No lines, you simply walk out with your groceries and your total is automatically deducted from your Amazon account. Nifty. And apparently it could be worth $37.7 billion in sales volume, plus a whole host of other efficiencies.

📉 What's down: On the flip side, though, some wholesale grocers are stealing business from Amazon as shoppers stock up on no-frills essentials through the pandemic.

🍕 Slice There's a platform aggregating 14,000 independent pizzerias and inching its way towards disrupting the pizza franchise model as it leverages its economies of scale to help local independents thrive in the online age with a comprehensive marketing, technology, branding and advertising playbook.

🍞 Bread & Jam 2.0 is the essential virtual conference for ambitious food & drink brands 🍞


If you’re looking to fast-track your business, learn from peers, connect with investors (for £150k investment) and buyers (from the UK’s top retailers) this is the conference you need.

Join from Oct 19 to 22 and use the promo code FOODHACK20 for 20% off

Get your tickets here

[Sponsored]

New In Funding

🐷 Hong Kong’s Green Monday has raised $70M this week for R&D and global expansion, and has been named on Fortune 2020’s ‘Change the World’ list. Having become Asia’s biggest wholesale plant-based product distributor, they’ve also developed a broad portfolio of meat alternatives. But the really cool part is the Green Monday Foundation, which advocates for the adoption of a ‘greener’ lifestyle, with a focus on sustainability and vegetarianism. Way to practise what you preach!

🍔 Mosa Meat closed a massive $55M Series B led by Blue Horizon Corporation. The funds will be used to to extend its current pilot production facility, develop an industrial sized production line, expand its team and work to achieve regulatory approval to serve up cultured meat to consumers in Europe.  

🍴Indonesian cloud kitchen startup Yummy Corporation raised $12M in series B funding. Their main edge is that they offer fully-managed location and kitchen operation services as well as kitchen facilities, so brands who want to meet the rising food delivery demand in South-East Asia can get the whole package.

☁️ San Francisco-based supply chain streaming company Silo raised $9M. Their cloud-based platform aims to streamline the food supply chain to reduce food waste.

🐔 Daring raises $8M to expand its plant-based chicken pieces production. Made from soy protein, sunflower oil and a spice blend, their products have a ‘clean label’, which is something about which consumers are becoming more concerned.


🚚 Helping independent grocers offer online ordering and same day delivery, Homesome raised $6.7M to expand its services. Its automation of store POS ensures inventory is around 95% accurate, so customers aren’t disappointed with store pick stock issues.

🧫 We talked about cultured meat last week, and it’s getting even bigger as UC Davis receives a $3.5M government grant for research and development in this area.

📦 Zero Grocery raises $3M for its plastic-free grocery delivery service. Food is bought in wholesale and repackaged for delivery to consumers, then empty containers are collected, sanitised and reused.

🔬 Aquatic biopesticide producer Sundew closes $1.7M seed round to fund development of biological treatments which are effective, affordable and environmentally benign.

🍱 Meallogix closed a $1.25M round of seed funding this week. Its software promises to take over the admin associated with running a meal prep or meal kit company. As this market saw huge growth when restaurants were shut, we foresee even more as consumers continue to embrace in-home dining through the next six months.

🦘 Australia’s first plant-based halloumi startup, Hello Friend, has launched a crowdfunder this week, in the hope of scaling up its distribution, growing its online store and maybe even going international.

Ocean friendly snacks and business4good

Meet this week top 5 product featured on FoodHack Discovery:

1️. KOA - turning the cocoa fruit into social impact and meaningful joy
2️. Daffee - A coffee-like, 100% caffeine-free, natural energy booster
3️. Nibs etc. - Snacks from ingredients that normally get thrown away.
4️. Lunchbox - A collection of powerful digital marketing and ordering tools for restaurants.
5️. 12 Tides - Ocean-friendly snacks made with kelp from regenerative ocean farms.

Have a product you'd like to get featured? Fill out the form here 🔍

Become a FoodHack+ member to get unlimited access

  • Read Unlimited Articles
  • Access Member Directory
  • Join a Global Community
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The next major Beyond / Impossible competitor will come from the East. I can feel it, quite literally - in my gut.

For the past week, I've been in Istanbul re-exploring the many varieties of foods my home country has to offer - Kebab(s), yayla çorbası, tavuklu pilav - all delicious staple dishes. And I realised two things:

  1. Turkish food is an all-around crowd-pleaser (yes, I'm biased).
  2. Turkish food is ripe for plant-based disruption and is currently far underserved.


The same can likely be said for countries in the Balkans; Georgia, Poland, Croatia coming to mind. If entrepreneurs in these countries were to see the recent $70M raise by Hong Kong-based Green Monday - dubbed "Asia's answer to Beyond Meat" as a spur of inspiration, we might be seeing some serious plant-based challenger brands emerging from this region with flavors that feel a little more familiar to the childhoods of mine, and many others.

I'll continue doing some more 'research' into this - but here's a nice intro-read for the curious.

Enough speculating, back to our regular This Week In Food.

The Digest

♻️ Eco drive: One of the biggest producers in the world, PepsiCo, has pledged to source 100% renewable electricity across its entire operation by 2030, the equivalent of taking half a million cars off the road every year! Nespresso has pledged that every cup of its coffee will be carbon neutral by 2022, with the launch of new capsules made from 80% recycled aluminium. Walmart will be cutting 60,000 pounds of annual plastic waste by switching to an innovative edible produce peel for its cucumbers, and has also announced its goal to produce zero emissions by 2040! Plant-based brand Alpro is committing to sustainability with a goal of ‘zero carbon, zero water and zero waste’ by 2025. 👏

🍄 Sustainable packaging: Alcohol-free spirit brand Seedlip has been experimenting with mushroom-based secondary packaging which is home compostable in just 45 days, as a more sustainable option than cardboard.

🍭 Give me some sugar(cane): Israeli foodtech startup W-Cycle is upcycling sugarcane waste into plastic-free packaging which is fully compostable and can be used for greasy, hot or wet foods. Game changer for the ready meal world.

💪 Functional foods: There’s a strong shift towards consumers wanting food and drink to work for them, but it’s no longer just sports consumers who are making the move towards functional products. Now, ‘lifestyle’ consumers are also looking for health benefits alongside perfect taste and convenience, and this article explains why they’re so trendy.

🔬 One of the biggest topics of the moment is fermentation; discover 8 things you need to know about the advancements in fermentation for the development of alternative protein sources, and how it’s about to explode.

🕵️ Detectives: In the fight against food fraud, researchers in Denmark have developed methods to detect adulteration in vanilla and black pepper. Both commodity ingredients, they can be falsified for economic gain, but at the expense of producers and consumers alike.

🥃 Pour up: Similar good news for whisky lovers, as Scottish physicists have developed a laser tool to detect counterfeit products, without opening a single bottle.

🌱 Urban farming: Nine urban farms in Singapore have been awarded a government grant of $29.3M to boost local food production and food security, to protect the city from global supply chain disruptions. Dive deeper into the world of vertical farms in our latest FoodHack+ Trends.

🥩 Meat sweats: Meat producers the world over are concerned as Impossible Foods reveal that 92% of sales of their Impossible burger come directly at the expense of animal meat products. This plus the news this week that they’re also expanding into Canada’s fast casual dining market means that world domination is imminent. It’s probably why three of the world’s biggest pork producers have released vegan meats this week.

🐣 A proposed new rule by USDA will allow poultry factories to process diseased chicken for human consumption. Poor timing, given the current global pandemic began with a disease transferred from an animal source. With this news it might be time to think about going vegan, although apparently plant-based consumers spend 61% more in retail, so maybe I can’t afford it…

🌱 Plant-based dining: Given the above, and the fact that legendary rapper Snoop Dogg is switching to a more plant-based diet, you can bet that more will follow. Target is making it easy to go more green with its launch of plant-based burgers, part of a 600-item range launch. And for dessert, you can now whip up vegan soft serve at home with Elmhurst’s new launch!

🥙 Takeover The LIVEKINDLY Collective acquire 100% of German plant meat producer, LikeMeat, a company that was founded in 2013 and today its products can be found across ten countries - serving up plant-versions of favorites like kebab, sausage and chicken. The investment fund already had a 51% stake in the company as of February this year and are now eyeing a US expansion with the brand.

🍂 It’s now officially autumn, the season of all things pumpkin-spiced, so here’s a handy guide on enjoying the Fall flavours at Starbucks, while staying plant-based, if that’s your bag.

🛒 Supermarket retailer ASDA has just become the first in the UK to launch 100% vegan aisles, and is adding more than 100 new plant-based products to its range due to rising consumer demand.

Sugar reduction: it’s the bad boy of ingredients, with consumers more aware than ever of sugar content and overconsumption. Scientists and producers are innovating to reduce the sugars within foods, but it’s a tricky business.

📈 What's up: Checkout-free - For anyone who’s shopped in an Amazon Go store, you have to agree that it’s the future. No lines, you simply walk out with your groceries and your total is automatically deducted from your Amazon account. Nifty. And apparently it could be worth $37.7 billion in sales volume, plus a whole host of other efficiencies.

📉 What's down: On the flip side, though, some wholesale grocers are stealing business from Amazon as shoppers stock up on no-frills essentials through the pandemic.

🍕 Slice There's a platform aggregating 14,000 independent pizzerias and inching its way towards disrupting the pizza franchise model as it leverages its economies of scale to help local independents thrive in the online age with a comprehensive marketing, technology, branding and advertising playbook.

🍞 Bread & Jam 2.0 is the essential virtual conference for ambitious food & drink brands 🍞


If you’re looking to fast-track your business, learn from peers, connect with investors (for £150k investment) and buyers (from the UK’s top retailers) this is the conference you need.

Join from Oct 19 to 22 and use the promo code FOODHACK20 for 20% off

Get your tickets here

[Sponsored]

New In Funding

🐷 Hong Kong’s Green Monday has raised $70M this week for R&D and global expansion, and has been named on Fortune 2020’s ‘Change the World’ list. Having become Asia’s biggest wholesale plant-based product distributor, they’ve also developed a broad portfolio of meat alternatives. But the really cool part is the Green Monday Foundation, which advocates for the adoption of a ‘greener’ lifestyle, with a focus on sustainability and vegetarianism. Way to practise what you preach!

🍔 Mosa Meat closed a massive $55M Series B led by Blue Horizon Corporation. The funds will be used to to extend its current pilot production facility, develop an industrial sized production line, expand its team and work to achieve regulatory approval to serve up cultured meat to consumers in Europe.  

🍴Indonesian cloud kitchen startup Yummy Corporation raised $12M in series B funding. Their main edge is that they offer fully-managed location and kitchen operation services as well as kitchen facilities, so brands who want to meet the rising food delivery demand in South-East Asia can get the whole package.

☁️ San Francisco-based supply chain streaming company Silo raised $9M. Their cloud-based platform aims to streamline the food supply chain to reduce food waste.

🐔 Daring raises $8M to expand its plant-based chicken pieces production. Made from soy protein, sunflower oil and a spice blend, their products have a ‘clean label’, which is something about which consumers are becoming more concerned.


🚚 Helping independent grocers offer online ordering and same day delivery, Homesome raised $6.7M to expand its services. Its automation of store POS ensures inventory is around 95% accurate, so customers aren’t disappointed with store pick stock issues.

🧫 We talked about cultured meat last week, and it’s getting even bigger as UC Davis receives a $3.5M government grant for research and development in this area.

📦 Zero Grocery raises $3M for its plastic-free grocery delivery service. Food is bought in wholesale and repackaged for delivery to consumers, then empty containers are collected, sanitised and reused.

🔬 Aquatic biopesticide producer Sundew closes $1.7M seed round to fund development of biological treatments which are effective, affordable and environmentally benign.

🍱 Meallogix closed a $1.25M round of seed funding this week. Its software promises to take over the admin associated with running a meal prep or meal kit company. As this market saw huge growth when restaurants were shut, we foresee even more as consumers continue to embrace in-home dining through the next six months.

🦘 Australia’s first plant-based halloumi startup, Hello Friend, has launched a crowdfunder this week, in the hope of scaling up its distribution, growing its online store and maybe even going international.

Ocean friendly snacks and business4good

Meet this week top 5 product featured on FoodHack Discovery:

1️. KOA - turning the cocoa fruit into social impact and meaningful joy
2️. Daffee - A coffee-like, 100% caffeine-free, natural energy booster
3️. Nibs etc. - Snacks from ingredients that normally get thrown away.
4️. Lunchbox - A collection of powerful digital marketing and ordering tools for restaurants.
5️. 12 Tides - Ocean-friendly snacks made with kelp from regenerative ocean farms.

Have a product you'd like to get featured? Fill out the form here 🔍

The next major Beyond / Impossible competitor will come from the East. I can feel it, quite literally - in my gut.

For the past week, I've been in Istanbul re-exploring the many varieties of foods my home country has to offer - Kebab(s), yayla çorbası, tavuklu pilav - all delicious staple dishes. And I realised two things:

  1. Turkish food is an all-around crowd-pleaser (yes, I'm biased).
  2. Turkish food is ripe for plant-based disruption and is currently far underserved.


The same can likely be said for countries in the Balkans; Georgia, Poland, Croatia coming to mind. If entrepreneurs in these countries were to see the recent $70M raise by Hong Kong-based Green Monday - dubbed "Asia's answer to Beyond Meat" as a spur of inspiration, we might be seeing some serious plant-based challenger brands emerging from this region with flavors that feel a little more familiar to the childhoods of mine, and many others.

I'll continue doing some more 'research' into this - but here's a nice intro-read for the curious.

Enough speculating, back to our regular This Week In Food.

The Digest

♻️ Eco drive: One of the biggest producers in the world, PepsiCo, has pledged to source 100% renewable electricity across its entire operation by 2030, the equivalent of taking half a million cars off the road every year! Nespresso has pledged that every cup of its coffee will be carbon neutral by 2022, with the launch of new capsules made from 80% recycled aluminium. Walmart will be cutting 60,000 pounds of annual plastic waste by switching to an innovative edible produce peel for its cucumbers, and has also announced its goal to produce zero emissions by 2040! Plant-based brand Alpro is committing to sustainability with a goal of ‘zero carbon, zero water and zero waste’ by 2025. 👏

🍄 Sustainable packaging: Alcohol-free spirit brand Seedlip has been experimenting with mushroom-based secondary packaging which is home compostable in just 45 days, as a more sustainable option than cardboard.

🍭 Give me some sugar(cane): Israeli foodtech startup W-Cycle is upcycling sugarcane waste into plastic-free packaging which is fully compostable and can be used for greasy, hot or wet foods. Game changer for the ready meal world.

💪 Functional foods: There’s a strong shift towards consumers wanting food and drink to work for them, but it’s no longer just sports consumers who are making the move towards functional products. Now, ‘lifestyle’ consumers are also looking for health benefits alongside perfect taste and convenience, and this article explains why they’re so trendy.

🔬 One of the biggest topics of the moment is fermentation; discover 8 things you need to know about the advancements in fermentation for the development of alternative protein sources, and how it’s about to explode.

🕵️ Detectives: In the fight against food fraud, researchers in Denmark have developed methods to detect adulteration in vanilla and black pepper. Both commodity ingredients, they can be falsified for economic gain, but at the expense of producers and consumers alike.

🥃 Pour up: Similar good news for whisky lovers, as Scottish physicists have developed a laser tool to detect counterfeit products, without opening a single bottle.

🌱 Urban farming: Nine urban farms in Singapore have been awarded a government grant of $29.3M to boost local food production and food security, to protect the city from global supply chain disruptions. Dive deeper into the world of vertical farms in our latest FoodHack+ Trends.

🥩 Meat sweats: Meat producers the world over are concerned as Impossible Foods reveal that 92% of sales of their Impossible burger come directly at the expense of animal meat products. This plus the news this week that they’re also expanding into Canada’s fast casual dining market means that world domination is imminent. It’s probably why three of the world’s biggest pork producers have released vegan meats this week.

🐣 A proposed new rule by USDA will allow poultry factories to process diseased chicken for human consumption. Poor timing, given the current global pandemic began with a disease transferred from an animal source. With this news it might be time to think about going vegan, although apparently plant-based consumers spend 61% more in retail, so maybe I can’t afford it…

🌱 Plant-based dining: Given the above, and the fact that legendary rapper Snoop Dogg is switching to a more plant-based diet, you can bet that more will follow. Target is making it easy to go more green with its launch of plant-based burgers, part of a 600-item range launch. And for dessert, you can now whip up vegan soft serve at home with Elmhurst’s new launch!

🥙 Takeover The LIVEKINDLY Collective acquire 100% of German plant meat producer, LikeMeat, a company that was founded in 2013 and today its products can be found across ten countries - serving up plant-versions of favorites like kebab, sausage and chicken. The investment fund already had a 51% stake in the company as of February this year and are now eyeing a US expansion with the brand.

🍂 It’s now officially autumn, the season of all things pumpkin-spiced, so here’s a handy guide on enjoying the Fall flavours at Starbucks, while staying plant-based, if that’s your bag.

🛒 Supermarket retailer ASDA has just become the first in the UK to launch 100% vegan aisles, and is adding more than 100 new plant-based products to its range due to rising consumer demand.

Sugar reduction: it’s the bad boy of ingredients, with consumers more aware than ever of sugar content and overconsumption. Scientists and producers are innovating to reduce the sugars within foods, but it’s a tricky business.

📈 What's up: Checkout-free - For anyone who’s shopped in an Amazon Go store, you have to agree that it’s the future. No lines, you simply walk out with your groceries and your total is automatically deducted from your Amazon account. Nifty. And apparently it could be worth $37.7 billion in sales volume, plus a whole host of other efficiencies.

📉 What's down: On the flip side, though, some wholesale grocers are stealing business from Amazon as shoppers stock up on no-frills essentials through the pandemic.

🍕 Slice There's a platform aggregating 14,000 independent pizzerias and inching its way towards disrupting the pizza franchise model as it leverages its economies of scale to help local independents thrive in the online age with a comprehensive marketing, technology, branding and advertising playbook.

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New In Funding

🐷 Hong Kong’s Green Monday has raised $70M this week for R&D and global expansion, and has been named on Fortune 2020’s ‘Change the World’ list. Having become Asia’s biggest wholesale plant-based product distributor, they’ve also developed a broad portfolio of meat alternatives. But the really cool part is the Green Monday Foundation, which advocates for the adoption of a ‘greener’ lifestyle, with a focus on sustainability and vegetarianism. Way to practise what you preach!

🍔 Mosa Meat closed a massive $55M Series B led by Blue Horizon Corporation. The funds will be used to to extend its current pilot production facility, develop an industrial sized production line, expand its team and work to achieve regulatory approval to serve up cultured meat to consumers in Europe.  

🍴Indonesian cloud kitchen startup Yummy Corporation raised $12M in series B funding. Their main edge is that they offer fully-managed location and kitchen operation services as well as kitchen facilities, so brands who want to meet the rising food delivery demand in South-East Asia can get the whole package.

☁️ San Francisco-based supply chain streaming company Silo raised $9M. Their cloud-based platform aims to streamline the food supply chain to reduce food waste.

🐔 Daring raises $8M to expand its plant-based chicken pieces production. Made from soy protein, sunflower oil and a spice blend, their products have a ‘clean label’, which is something about which consumers are becoming more concerned.


🚚 Helping independent grocers offer online ordering and same day delivery, Homesome raised $6.7M to expand its services. Its automation of store POS ensures inventory is around 95% accurate, so customers aren’t disappointed with store pick stock issues.

🧫 We talked about cultured meat last week, and it’s getting even bigger as UC Davis receives a $3.5M government grant for research and development in this area.

📦 Zero Grocery raises $3M for its plastic-free grocery delivery service. Food is bought in wholesale and repackaged for delivery to consumers, then empty containers are collected, sanitised and reused.

🔬 Aquatic biopesticide producer Sundew closes $1.7M seed round to fund development of biological treatments which are effective, affordable and environmentally benign.

🍱 Meallogix closed a $1.25M round of seed funding this week. Its software promises to take over the admin associated with running a meal prep or meal kit company. As this market saw huge growth when restaurants were shut, we foresee even more as consumers continue to embrace in-home dining through the next six months.

🦘 Australia’s first plant-based halloumi startup, Hello Friend, has launched a crowdfunder this week, in the hope of scaling up its distribution, growing its online store and maybe even going international.

Ocean friendly snacks and business4good

Meet this week top 5 product featured on FoodHack Discovery:

1️. KOA - turning the cocoa fruit into social impact and meaningful joy
2️. Daffee - A coffee-like, 100% caffeine-free, natural energy booster
3️. Nibs etc. - Snacks from ingredients that normally get thrown away.
4️. Lunchbox - A collection of powerful digital marketing and ordering tools for restaurants.
5️. 12 Tides - Ocean-friendly snacks made with kelp from regenerative ocean farms.

Have a product you'd like to get featured? Fill out the form here 🔍