Willicroft, the popular Dutch alternative cheese start-up, today announced that it has raised €2 million to fuel its growth in the UK, Germany and the Nordics. Willicroft is environmentally focused and has previously modified its pulse-based recipes for increased sustainability.
“Our new bean-based range produces up to 5 times less CO2 than the dairy alternatives it replaces.”
The pre-seed round was led by Rockstart, the venture capital arm of Paulig PINC, Döhler and Feast Ventures as co-investors. The brand was previously backed by Capital V, the venture capital firm founded by prolific vegan investor Michiel van Deursen.
A success story focused on the planet
Based in Amsterdam, Wllicroft was originally founded as a dairy farm in the UK in 1957 and relaunched in its current form as a plant-based cheese business in Amsterdam in 2018, becoming the first plant-based cheese company to become BCorp in Europe.
After enjoying success in the Netherlands and Belgium, the brand’s This is Not Cheese range expanded to the UK in 2020 and is now set to enter other European markets as it continues its mission. to bring sustainable cheese to as many people as possible.
Co-Founder and CEO Brad Vanstone says, “Our new bean-based line produces up to 5x less CO2 than the dairy alternatives it replaces. We need holistic solutions to address major changes to our food system – having recently achieved B Corp status, we believe we are on the right track to addressing these issues at their root cause.
“With this new increase, we will bring our delicious range of PBCs to the beautiful brand in 3 new markets […] continuing our quest to become the world’s first net-positive plant-based cheese company”
“With this further increase, we will bring our delicious range of beautiful branded PBCs to 3 new markets: UK, Germany and the Nordics, recruiting seniors and continuing our quest to become the first net-positive plant-based cheese factory Our new group of investors can help open up a number of new markets while accelerating the continued evolution of our products.
“Willicroft is by far the tastiest line of plant-based cheeses we have come across. It has a more nutritious and sustainable ingredient list than most alternatives available today and a high-powered team with traction in Europe, so we couldn’t be more excited to support this company,” says Marika King, head of PINC, the venture capital arm of Paulig.
Mark Durno, Managing Partner AgriFood, Rockstart says, “Willicroft is taking plant-based dairy alternatives to the next level. In addition to making delicious products (I’ve tasted several, I recommend them!), they help farmers switch to sustainable production by enabling a local supply chain without the need for monoculture or highly processed ingredients. . They’ve spent the last few years understanding their consumers and their footprint, and the next phase will be scaling those learnings.