Chef Founded Organic, Plant-Based, Artisanal Cheese Company Ready to Go Nuts!
Nuts For Cheese™, maker of dairy-free, plant-based, artisanal cheeses, today announced a $5.35 million round of funding led by Forage Capital Partners along with highly experienced CPG veterans Mike Fata and Dror Balshine.
Founded in 2015 by vegan chef, Margaret Coons, Nuts For Cheese™ self-manufacturers its complete line of fermented cashew-based cheeses and butters with house-made cultures in a certified organic facility without the use of any starches, gums, fillers, or artificial flavors. The investment will go towards CAPEX for equipment and facility enhancements to support the rapidly growing consumer demand as well as towards key hires, innovation, and marketing initiatives. The company will also be implementing a board of directors led by Mike Fata as Chairman of the Board.
“From the early days I’ve worked hard to surround myself with the right partners,” said Margaret Coons, CEO, and Founder at Nuts For Cheese™. “It’s been such a journey, from a rented commercial kitchen to building out our current 25,000 square foot facility. What once looked huge to me is now quickly becoming ready for more expansion. This investment comes at a perfect time for us to be able to keep pace with our growth and I couldn’t be happier partnering with a company like Forage which has extensive experience in the food space and such an incredible team.”
“Nuts For Cheese™ is exactly the type of creative and innovative company that Forage loves to invest in,” said Jim Taylor, Partner. “Forage is really excited to invest in a leading vegan cheese company that provides consumers with a real food alternative to traditional cheeses.”
According to Nielsen data, the non-dairy cheese category is growing 21% and is fueled by an increasing number of consumers adding more plant-based products to their baskets. Per Spins data, sixty-two percent or 79 million U.S. households are now buying plant-based products. Since its founding days sold at farmers’ markets Nuts For Cheese™ has quickly expanded into more than 1,900 retail outlets in Canada including Sobey’s, Fortinos, and Save On Foods and almost 2,000 doors in the U.S. made up of a few regions of Whole Foods Market and many strong independent chains with the most recent national launch into Sprouts Farmer’s Market in June.
Made with chef-grade quality, Nuts For Cheese™ has always been about innovative recipes that deliver exceptional taste. “I love to create delicious vegan food that brings everyone together,” said Coons. “My recipes for our SKUs, Un-Brie-leviable, Smoky Gouda, Black Garlic, Artichoke & Herb, Super Blue, and Chipotle Cheddar, focus on delivering a smooth, creamy texture with bold, distinctive flavors. Perfect as the center piece on a plant-based charcuterie board or as part of a vegan recipe, we hope Nuts For Cheese™ helps elevate any culinary experience.”
Founded in 2015, Nuts For Cheese™ started with an inspired chef who has an unparalleled passion to spread positive, sustainable change through food. Originally crafted in the back of a vegan kitchen, Nuts For Cheese quickly built its own manufacturing facility in order to preserve the integrity of the recipes and chef-grade quality. Recognized as a leader in the plant-based cheese movement, the complete line of 100% dairy-free, plant-based fermented cashew-based cheeses and butters are made with house-made cultures in a certified organic facility without the use of any starches, gums, fillers or artificial flavors. Nuts For Cheese™ is a certified Women Business Enterprise and certified LGBTBE. To learn more about Nuts For Cheese™, visit www.nutsforcheese.com, or follow Nuts For Cheese™ on Instagram (@NutsForChese), Facebook (@NutsForCheese), and Twitter (@NutsForCheese).
Forage Capital Partners is Canada’s most experienced team of Ag & Food investors, having managed over $500 million in commitments to the industry over the last 18 years. Forage Capital Ag & Food Business Solutions Fund works to provide its portfolio companies with the stability and flexibility they need to expand and adapt their business models during these challenging times. The fund will invest with creative business owners that are looking to capitalize on new and innovative opportunities that will emerge as the Canadian economy recovers and prospers. For more information on Forage Capital Partners, visit www.foragecapitalpartners.com.
SOURCE: Nuts For Cheese