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“We’re a food-tech innovation firm making … scrumptious zero-dairy and sustainable cheese for the meals service and grocery retail channels. Our mission is principally embedded within the identify of our firm, which is Armored Contemporary. So, armored comes from our want to protect and defend the well being and well-being of individuals … on the identical time guarding and defending our animals and our surroundings.”
Began in 2019, Armored Contemporary makes use of patented expertise to create plant-based cheese by way of fermentation utilizing plant-based lactic acid and plant-based milk. The corporate’s first merchandise had been launched within the US in October 2022 and are actually obtainable in Kroger, Contemporary Thyme Market, City and Nation Meals, Fred Meyer, and different shops nationwide.
Armored Contemporary gives American, Cheddar, Provolone, and Pepper Jack cheeses in almond-based slices or oat-based cubes; almond-based cubes in Cheddar, Plain, and Blueberry flavors; and an oat-based Mozzarella shred. Moreover, it has an oat-based unfold in Spicy Jalapeno, Plain, and Garlic Herb flavors for foodservice institutions. Initially of 2024, Armored Contemporary launched its newest product, Oat Milk Pepper Jack Slices, Yu mentioned.
“The event of our oat-milk pepperjack slices is actually that we ran it by way of the identical patented fermentation course of that we use to develop all our cheeses, and so the result’s principally the identical. It is an incredible tasting. It has the aroma and the warmth of pepperjack, [and] has a bit of little bit of the nuttiness and the umami taste” of pepperjack.
Plant-based offers with sluggish demand, capital crunch
Whereas Armored Contemporary is optimistic concerning the plant-based cheese class, Yu admitted that the plant-based section is dealing with challenges from each the funding and retail facet.
“From the funding perspective, we have been comparatively profitable securing our sequence A spherical and pre-B spherical,” Yu mentioned. “There are challenges available in the market, clearly. We speak to loads of retailers, and they’re telling us plant-based cheese, or plant-based meals basically, … is just not doing very nicely.”
To counteract these challenges, Armored Contemporary is popping to promotional actions to indicate shoppers that plant-based cheese can style pretty much as good as animal-based variations. This 12 months, the corporate hosted greater than a dozen tastings, and the response has been resoundingly constructive. Armored Contemporary is making an attempt to vary client perceptions that plant-based cheeses are inferior merchandise in comparison with their animal-based counterparts.
“We’re bringing a brand new enthusiasm into this class, and the buyers are getting it. They received it again final 12 months once we closed our sequence pre-B spherical, and I feel going ahead I really feel [Armored Fresh] would be the chief on this class, main the cost by way of our style, pricing, soften potential, [and] our enlargement of our classes by way of including new flavors.”