A new oat milk company has launched in Singapore, but unlike existing players on the market, Oatside claims it is the city state’s first ‘full stack’ oat drink and one of a only a handful in Asia. Former Kraftz Heinz Indonesia CFO Benedict Lim developed the brand during the Covid-19 pandemic and cites its domestic production approach as a key USP. Oatside retains control over every facet of the manufacturing process sourcing ingredients, oat extraction and packaging are all managed in-house.
Oatside claims to have eliminated any non-natural ingredients aswell. Boasting a ‘clean label’ approach, the company says it only contains ingredients that ‘everyone can pronounce and understand’. Gums, emulsifiers and preservatives are notably absent. The result, according to the company, is a heart-healthy drink low in saturated fat.
Covering the spectrum
Oat milk’s popularity is impossible to deny. In order to join the growing market but stake its own claim, Oatside has developed multiple flavours. Three flavours have been included in the initial launch: Chocolate, Barista Blends and Chocolate Hazelnut. Each has been made using Australian oats and carries Halal-certification.
“We know that taste is often a barrier for more people adopting sustainable milks, so our goal was to develop an oat milk that could overcome these perceptions,” Benedict Lim, founder and CEO of Oatside said in a statement. “It was a challenge developing the right product with existing setups at contract manufacturers in the early days, so we took the longer approach of building out our own production line that allowed us more customization and control over the oat extraction process.”
No artificial flavours have been used in the chocolate varieties. Instead, Oatside cites high quality hazelnuts and Indonesian-African cacao beans. Both are Rainforest Alliance certified.
The company has raised $16.35 million to date. A successful pre-Series A closed in December 2020, having been led by Proterra Investment Partners Asia. “We are excited to be a part of the Oatside journey,” Tai Lin, managing partner at Proterra ASia said in a statement. “Plant-based milk is the sustainable future of milk and we believe Oatside will be one of the key drivers of the category in Asia with best-in-class taste.”
At the time of completion, Oatside earmarked its pre-Series A funding for production scale-up. True to its word, the company allocated investment to support in-house manufacturing facilities.
Oat milk taking over
One of the key drivers of oat milk’s popularity, Oatly expanded its reach in Asia in 2021. Manufacturing plants were opened in China and Singapore, to tackle supply bottlenecks globally. Like Oatside has already managed, Oatly has announced that it intends to bring as much of the production process back in-house as possible. This appears to be a popular business model for oat milk, worldwide.
In Australia, Wide Open Agriculture has pledged to make the lowest carbon milk in the world. It’s oat milk brand, OatUp, will use regeneratively farmed local oats, which are processed in-house.
More recently, Latin America has entered the oat milk race, thanks to Brazilian brand Nude. The company recently closed a $5 million Series A funding round, led by Vox Capital, to scale production and diversify its product portfolio. Nude is a registered B-Corp and claims to be carbon neutral across its entire operation.
Lead photo by Oatside.