Chr. Hansen has become the latest member to join Mista, an initiative focused on the development of sustainable innovative foods, as it aims to accelerate its fermented plant-based activities.
Established by Givaudan, Mista is an innovation platform that aims to bring together the expertise of larger companies operating in different segments of the value chain and the agility and fast-paced innovation spirit of start-ups.
Chr. Hansen will join Danone, Mars, and Ingredion – who signed up as founding members of Givaudan’s platform in 2018 – to work with a selected cohort of around 20 start-ups.
With this collaboration, Chr. Hansen intends to further develop fermented plant-based solutions that help its customers meet the same trend, as well as help create a sustainable global food system.
According to the ingredients supplier, fermented plant-based foods – an industry which is rapidly growing – can offer dairy alternatives that provide the same taste profile as associated with traditional dairy products.
Based in San Francisco, Mista operates a test kitchen and pilot scale production and laboratory facilities. Chr. Hansen will invest in fermentation capability including equipment and application staff on site to run collaborative projects and to conduct its own internal research.
Ross Crittenden, senior director of commercial development for plant-based dairy alternatives at Chr. Hansen, will manage the company’s participation in Mista.
“Our foray represents a bold new approach to exploring close-to-market innovation using a tailored ecosystem. It will allow us to participate in building new ideas with innovative start-ups whilst leveraging the power of large and established ingredient and end-product developers,” said Crittenden.
“This will accelerate the innovation, and also increase the chance of success, since all parties are working together for the same goal – ultimately co-creating solutions that address the health and wellness of both people and the planet.”
Last year, Chr. Hansen responded to increased innovation in the dairy alternative sector with the launch of nu-trish LGG DA probiotic for plant-based dairy products.
Crittenden added: “Working closely with the other partners will help us to accelerate our research, and ultimately our product development, within the exciting space of fermented plant-based. Chr. Hansen already has a number of solutions in this category, but we are keen to offer even more options to our customers.
“We also look forward to supporting the other members’ aims of developing exciting, tasty, healthy and sustainable foods, and gaining valuable knowledge and commercialisation opportunities along the way.”
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