Betterland foods, a brand new Californian company from Think! Founder Liz Falsetto, has launched Betterland cow-free milk made using Perfect Day’s animal-free whey protein. The product was developed using precision fermentation and the company claims it is “virtually indistinguishable” from conventional cow’s milk.
The milk, which comes in two varieties- whole and extra creamy- is set to be unveiled at next month’s Natural Products Expo West show in Anaheim, California next month. While no retail distribution agreements have been finalised, Betterland says numerous are in progress.
The milk is said to have the same “cooking , whipping, steaming, frothing and baking functionality” as regular milk, but with a smaller environmental impact. It has been designed to offer an alternative to plant milk varieties that do not mimic the taste of conventional milk, in a bid to sway consumers who name this as a stumbling block to ditching animal products.
Already knowledgeable thanks to her building of Think!, which creates high protein, sugar-free, and gluten-free nutrition bars, Falsetto identified San Francisco’s Perfect Day as an exciting development. In particular, she was impressed by the green credentials of its whey production, which requires 99 percent less water than conventional alternatives. A 97 percent decrease in emissions and a need for 60 percent less non-renewable energy sealed the deal.
“In the five years after selling Think!, I kept an eye on the space of protein innovation,” Falsetto said in a statement. “When I saw what Perfect Day founders Ryan and Perumal were doing to cultivate nutritious, more sustainable milk proteins, I felt the pull to not only get back into the industry, but to help build a portfolio of products that taste great, while being better for the planet. That’s when Betterland foods was born.”
The result is an animal-free milk, dubbed Betterland cow-free milk, with enhanced nutrition compared to the conventional option. It will be the flagship product of the Betterland portfolio, and is hormone, antibiotic, lactose and cholesterol-free. It marks Falsetto’s first move into the dairy sector, though not the last, if current expansion plans are anything to go by. Multiple food categories are said to be on the cards for exploration by Betterland foods. A focus on clean protein-rich products is expected to be maintained.
“This is an incredible moment when we can finally deliver a product consumers have been asking us for since day one, and give the world another way to enjoy the milk we’ve loved for literally thousands of years — now with much less impact on the planet,” Ryan Pandya, co-founder and CEO at Perfect Day, said in a statement.
“We only wanted to launch milk when we knew we could deliver a no-compromise option for consumers, and we’re delighted to be doing just that with Betterland foods and Lizanne. Her legacy as a protein pioneer and her track record for scaling CPG brands will help bring our protein to even more people while deepening our relentless commitment to quality and sustainability.”
Disrupting the dairy monopoly
Perfect Day has sought to usurp conventional dairy’s grip on consumer preferences before. In November last year, the company announced that its bioidentical whey is being used to create animal-free whey protein powder. Natreve’s Mooless range is due for imminent release. This comes after moves into cream cheese and ice cream. News of product finalisation came after Starbucks revealed it is trialling Perfect Day milk in two stores.
Perfect Day is not alone in seeking commercial applications for precision fermentation dairy. In the U.K., alt-milk brand Mighty has thrown its hat into the ring, following a £4.5 million seed plus round in December. Money raised will be used to support international expansion, plus the release of precision fermentation milk products, supposedly in early 2022.
Lead photo by betterland foods.