PepsiCo has announced the ten emerging nutrition food and beverage entrepreneurs that will join its incubator programme, Nutrition Greenhouse.

Designed to support nutrition food and beverage entrepreneurs, the programme returned for its second year in June 2018. Nutrition Greenhouse offers each of the ten participating companies a €20,000 grant, and access to PepsiCo mentors and experts to take their business to the next level.

This year’s finalists – three of which are from the UK - were chosen based on their product quality and positioning, focus on health and wellness and scalable business model.

The 10 startups, one of whom will receive an additional €100,000 at the end of the programme, are:

  • Nibble Protein (London, UK) High protein, gluten and dairy free bites made with less sugar, suitable for vegan and diabetic diets. https://www.nibbleprotein.com/
  • Revolicious (London, UK) Ready-to-eat dairy and gluten free smoothie bowls, made with a 100% natural ingredient base of coconut milk, banana and flax seeds – blended with fruits and vegetables. http://www.revolicious.com/
  • Rokit Pods (SCEV) (Oxfordshire, UK) Organic, vegan-friendly drinks capsules compatible with a range of well-known coffee machines, containing on-trend ingredients including matcha, yerba mate, ginseng, maca and goji berry. https://rokitpods.com/
  • A1C Foods (Ramat Gan, Israel) Make low-carbohydrate food products, such as chocolate, bread and ice cream, using a formula designed to lower the glycemic index without use of artificial sweeteners. https://a1cfoods.co.il/
  • Agrasys (Barcelona, Spain) The company behind Tritordeum - a Mediterranean cereal made from a combination of durum wheat and a wild barley, with nutritional and agronomic benefits that is suitable for a wide range of cereal-based foods and beverages. http://www.agrasys.es/en/
  • Gryö (Paris, France) Organic snacks made with alternative proteins - including algae and plant-based proteins. http://gryo-bars.com/
  • Le Petit Béret (Béziers, France) Non-alcoholic wine produced without fermentation, preservatives or sulphites. Developed in partnership with agri-food research institutes and leading wine sommelier, Dominique Laporte. http://www.lepetitberet.com/en/
  • The Sprouted Grain Company (Ramat Gan, Israel) Nutritionally superior, easy-to-digest whole grains, legumes, flours, nuts and seeds, with exceptionally long shelf life. http://www.sproutedgrainco.com
  • Welldrinks (Sofia, Bulgaria) qwell is a new brand of functional beverages, made by combining hydrolyzed collagen with vitamins and minerals for smart, healthier hydration. http://feel-qwell.com/en/
  • Yofix (Ashdod, Israel) Clean-label vegan and soy-free fermented dairy alternatives. https://www.yofix.co.il/

As well as receiving an initial €20,000 grant, the 10 companies will collaborate with functional and brand experts from some of PepsiCo’s leading brands to help them achieve accelerated growth. The programme includes a dedicated schedule of in-person workshops and virtual training, designed to address critical early-stage business issues and overcome immediate market challenges.

The company that demonstrates the most scalable and sustainable market approach by the end of the programme, will be awarded a €100,000 prize to continue its expansion.

The Nutrition Greenhouse programme is part of PepsiCo’s commitment to open innovation and to collaborating with the food and beverage changemakers of the future. Senior Director of Innovation, PepsiCo Europe & Sub-Saharan Africa, and leader of the programme, David Schwartz, commented:

“I’m delighted to welcome all 10 of these exciting businesses to our programme. Last year’s class of finalists really proved their potential, so we can’t wait to see how we can help deliver a step change for the industry with our 2018 class. The Nutrition Greenhouse incubator is an important initiative for PepsiCo, as we continue to build on our 20-plus year legacy of anticipating and adapting to changes in the way consumers view nutrition and health and wellness. Together with the entire Greenhouse team, we’re confident we can drive another successful year of sustainable growth for 10 new breakthrough brands, harnessing the power of convenient, nutritious products in the process.”

For further updates on the programme, please visit www.nutritiongreenhouse.com.

Comments from the ten companies:

Nibble Protein Founder and Managing Director Erin Moroney commented: “I created Nibble after discovering I was protein deficient while training for the marathon. I struggled to find any all-natural, lower sugar, vegan, protein snacks and I was confident I wasn’t the only one looking for a genuinely healthy option. I didn’t hesitate to apply for PepsiCo’s Nutrition Greenhouse, because I know how invaluable the mentoring side of the programme will be in learning how to scale up to meet the growing demand for our innovative bites.”

Revolicious Founder and Director Jessica Barac commented: “As our name suggests, we want to revolutionize eating on-the-go in a delicious, nutritious way. Our ready-to-eat smoothie bowls, made with all natural ingredients, are cold-pressed and provide two of your ‘five-a-day’ in each bowl. We’ve had great success with leading independent retailers and cafes to date, but know there is more we can do to better communicate the benefits of our bowls to mainstream consumers. We want to broaden our healthier snacking offering and look forward to working with PepsiCo’s Nutrition Greenhouse team to set our stall for future growth.”

Rokit Pods brand owner and Director at SCEV Scott Markham commented: “Since SCEV launched our Rokit Pods into the market in the middle of 2017, we’ve had incredible interest from consumers and retailers both nationally in the UK, as well as throughout Europe and the USA. We have capitalised on our initial success by introducing a new look and feel for the product, which we’re excited to work on amplifying as part of PepsiCo’s Nutrition Greenhouse programme. With our organic, vegan-friendly, feel-good coffee machine capsules, we know we have a great product to offer people. We look forward to further understanding the marketplace through the guidance and expertise of our mentor.”

A1C Foods CEO Ran Hirsch, who founded the company with Dr. Mariela Glandt commented: “We started our company in 2017 with a simple yet ambitious aim of helping to make the world a healthier place. Our chocolate and bread products are designed to make a low carbohydrate diet both accessible and sustainable, allowing people to have a balanced lifestyle without sacrificing the foods they enjoy. We see PepsiCo as being a powerful collaborator in our journey, and anticipate learning a lot in the coming months about how to advance our brand and proposition.”

Agrasys Communication and Marketing Manager Veronica Guerra commented: “We’re all becoming much more conscious of our environmental and ecological footprint, and the impact we have on the world around us. With Tritordeum, our company has introduced a more sustainable cereal that can better adapt to the variety of changes in our climate. We see it as the answer to today’s market demand for natural, traceable and functional ingredients, and know we are uniquely placed to deliver with help from PepsiCo. We applied for the Nutrition Greenhouse programme to accelerate our business and can’t wait to get started.”

Gryö Founder Julia Berdugo commented: “It is a well-known fact that we need to be finding sustainable solutions to continue to feed the world’s growing population. Gryö is focused on delivering such a solution through our range of alternative protein snack bars and appetizers. Consumers are increasingly opting for plant-based diets for both environmental, nutritional and ethical reasons, and we’re perfectly positioned to support their choice in a substantial way. I am thrilled to be part of PepsiCo’s Nutrition Greenhouse programme as I look to develop and expand Gryö’s commercial network, both nationally and internationally.”

Le Petit Beret CEO Fathi Benni commented: “We’re excited to see how PepsiCo’s Nutrition Greenhouse can help drive our business forward. Feelness is the first 0.0% alcohol wine to be produced in the world and was an idea born during a meal with friends. We want to bring people together with Feelness and share our love of wine culture with people around the world, particularly those who are seeking a healthier, non-alcoholic drink. Working with some of PepsiCo’s leading experts in R&D and sales could provide a real step change for us as a business.”

The Sprouted Grain Company Founder and CEO, Nili Badanowski commented: “There is unlimited potential and opportunity in the health food market, and The Sprouted Grain Company aims to play a transformative role. We turn staple foods such as grains, legumes and flours into richer sources of nutrition that are also easier to digest - through the power of sprouting. Our goals are to make it simpler for people to use more nutritious ingredients when preparing their meals and to offer food manufacturers superior ingredients for their packaged foods. We believe the resources and mentorship available through PepsiCo’s Nutrition Greenhouse will help us to make a lasting impact in the world of food and consumer health.”

Welldrinks Managing Directors, Alexander Kamcharov and Tihomir Yovchev commented: “With qwell we feel we have identified a new opportunity in the beverage category and introduced a product that is genuinely exciting. The use of collagen in beauty and personal care products is well-established, but to combine it with vitamins and mineral water takes it firmly into the ever-growing health and wellness space. We fundamentally believe in the science behind our products, and want to use our place in PepsiCo’s Nutrition Greenhouse class of 2018 to expand our consumer base and test new product initiatives.”

Yofix CEO Steve Grun commented: “At Yofix, we’re offering a great-tasting yoghurt alternative to people who need or want to lower their consumption of dairy and soy products. And we know that increasingly, people are consciously opting for dairy alternatives to support a more natural diet and lifestyle.  As a finalist in PepsiCo’s Nutrition Greenhouse, we’ll be looking for support in reaching even more people with our prebiotic and probiotic products through a focus on traditional and digital marketing and advertising.”