Julienne Bruno Raises £5 Million for Its Dairy-Free Cheese Made for Food Lovers

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London-based food tech startup Julienne Bruno has raised £5 million in a seed round, bringing its total funding to more than £6 million for its dairy-free cheese made from soy milk.

Funding for the fresh round was led by Cherry Ventures, Outsized Ventures, Seedcamp, and Nicoya and follows the pre-seed £1 million raise last year. That funding round, led by Seedcamp, helped the company develop its Collection 01 of dairy-free cheese including Burrella, Crematta, and Superstraccia.

Vegan cheese for food lovers

The company emphasizes the human love affair with gastronomy. “We are an international team of chefs; devoted to flavour, hungry for discovery. The kitchen is our workshop. Our playground. Our canvas. It’s where we create joyful everyday products from humble plant-based ingredients,” the company says on its website.

“Our world revolves around gastronomy: sourcing. Sampling. Serving. Savouring. Every step in our process is a decision that builds flavour.”

“I’d like to take this opportunity to give a warm welcome to everyone who is just hearing about us for the first time,” said Axel Katalan, Julienne Bruno’s founder. Katalan, who also co-founded the smart building tech company Pointr, launched Julienne Bruno in 2020 during the covid pandemic. “We are one heart and many hands. Always curious and always hungry. The kitchen is our creative workshop and hospitality is our culture. Now, let’s sit and eat.”

Julienne Bruno is now available at Holland & Barrett, among other U.K. retailers | Courtesy

The company, which takes its name from popular vegetable cut styles, is working to disrupt the conventional dairy industry. Its dairy-free cheeses are currently stocked at Selfridges London, Holland & Barrett, and Whole Foods Market in the U.K., with more retail placement to come as demand for dairy continues its ascent, particularly across Europe. The vegan cheese category alone is expected to surpass $4 billion by 2027.

‘Best-tasting dairy-free plant-based cheese’

“At remarkable speed–less than a year of development–the Julienne Bruno team has created and brought the best-tasting dairy-free, plant-based cheese to market,” Christian Meermann, founding partner at Cherry Ventures, said in a statement.

“Julienne Bruno’s Collection 01 is not only a more sustainable and ethical alternative to dairy products but also tastes even better! Axel and his team are elevating the dairy-free food experience without compromising on taste or texture,” Carlos Eduardo Espinal, managing partner at Seedcamp said.

The company has enlisted top chefs to help accelerate its mission, including multiple Michelin-starred chefs Albert Adria, Sunjiv Shah, and Board Advisor Alan Yau MBE.

Julienne Bruno uses soy milk and vegetable fibers for its dairy-free cheese | Courtesy

Julienne Bruno is turning to a classic dairy-free ingredient for its cheese: soy milk. According to the company, the cheeses are created in fresh batches each week in-house, using organic soy and coconut oil, and are naturally fermented through a bespoke system, which has been perfected over the past two years. It also uses vegetables as well as coconut oil to achieve a fatty texture. Grounded Foods, the California-based vegan cheese company, is also working with vegetables, chiefly cauliflower, to achieve a dairy-like taste and texture in its products.

Julienne Bruno says its versatile cheeses are not vegan versions of dairy-based cheese, though, but stand in their own category as bona fide cheese products. “We’re taking plant-based to new levels through exploration, creativity, and delicious discovery,” the company says on its website. “By bringing together innovative techniques and simple, natural produce, we’re showing plant-based is the most exciting area in gastronomy.”


Lead image courtesy of Julienne Bruno.

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