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Nowadays puts its spin on plant-based nuggets –

The alternative protein venue is hot, hot, hot as evidenced by the number of companies producing the goods and the capital investment entering the venue.

Investment in other proteins, for example, plant-based and dairy substitutes was $ 5 billion by 2021, according to both Nutrition Institute and Crunchbase data.

The last company to attract commercial capital is These daysa company founded in San Francisco 2020 by Public Benefits Company Max Elder and Dominik Grabinski.

Elder told TechCrunch that the company raised $ 7 million for the seed cycle, describing it as “one of the highest seed rate ratings in its category” – refusing to share the numbers – to give the company almost $ 10 million in total funding to date. . This includes a $ 2 million cycle before seed from 2021.

The round was led by Stray Dog Capital, with additional strategic support from Standard Meat Co., a private meat and packaging company. Additional participants in the round include returning investors VegInvest Trust, Tenacious Ventures, Cornucopian Capital and Good Protein Fund. New investors include Selva Ventures, Vanterra Accelerator Fund, FoodHack, Gaingels, Beyond Impact and the unpopular Ventures, and a group of angel investors, including Rachel Mansfield, Varsha Rao and Brandon Shainfeld.

Dominik Grabinski, Max Elder, These days

These days co-founders Dominik Grabinski and Max Elder. Copyright: These days

The old man and Grabinski have recently begun to focus on the health side of plant-based meat whose first product is a crispy, plant-based chicken broth made from seven ingredients, including bean protein, flour, sunflower oil. and yeast and mushroom extract.

Unlike other protein companies producing new technologies, the company is using existing technologies used to make pasta dishes such as cereals and cereals to cut all its products which are then made now, and in the future, designs and cutlets. .

It uses a low moisture extraction method that carries proteins and fibers and adds heat, steam and pressure which directs the fibrous matrix. The old one is similar to the same method used to knead the dead dough and make different pasta shapes.

“Using the technique, we can limit the muscle of animals to different shapes and sizes,” he added. “That is the key to our diversity because some other companies have limited their technology to be able to do it the same way.”

Weight is always a factor when it comes to making meals like this, and the Elder confirms what we have also tried to prove with our reports – that many companies have not yet reached the weight. In fact, he noted that consumers see less than 2% of other meat products currently produced.

This is due to both supply and demand: On the demand side, some companies offer solutions that customers do not actively seek, while on the supply side, companies have found the most efficient method of production, which is complex and expensive. ah. , An elder explained.

He believes that these days they are not only breaking the food code that customers want and love, but also in terms of logistics with the help of Standard Meat. This enables these days to create its plant-based meat and easily insert existing Meat Completion Lines to measure production both quickly and costly.

“We’re coming up with new proteins, but instead of redesigning the whole process, we’re re-inventing industrial tires where a 75-year-old company has already created the effectiveness of what they do,” Elder added. “We have to compete with cheaper products, so we are thinking differently about product development and size and we will find out how to put that back in order to build another future.”

Chicken, on the other hand, is one of the most popular meat groups, which is why so many of the plant-based protein startups started here. Last year we saw news from Meat Beyond, which in part went into KFC restaurants, parts of Panda Express and its submissions into grocery stores. Funding news came from Next Gen Foods, which raised $ 20 million, Daring Foods went to Walmart and raised $ 65 million for its $ 50 million Nugget.

These days it will focus on its new funding for the trade in new “chicken” plant-based products, including cutlets, which will launch this summer as a direct product for consumers and select restaurants. The company is also expanding its food service distribution and has acquired space on the shelves of some grocery stores earlier this year.

Once its production facility is operational, the company will be able to produce six metric tons of meat per day up to 60 metric tons if it runs 100% daily, Elder said. That is only the meat part, but then it will move on to the partners, like regular Meat, to finish, which is the baking, bread, fried and the frozen part. The company is also working on a gluten-free bread that will launch this year as well.

While he did not disclose revenue figures, the Elder said these days he sees sales levels recurring more than 20% of his previous direct business, and the products are in restaurants in New York and Los Angeles.

“For me, the big endorsement is what we have seen in previous restaurant partners, our loyal direct-to-consumer customers and the only retail feedback we have been in touch with, and they will start with us,” he added. “That suggests, and then on the rise, it is time to measure and launch new products to continue channel service more robustly.”