Singapore-based dairy-substitutes brand Mohjo has secured an undisclosed amount of seed funding led by East Ventures.
The round also saw participation from iSeed Southeast Asia, K3 Ventures, and other high-profile angels.
The capital will be used to build the company’s capacity and launch more plant-based foods and beverages. A portion of the capital will also go into hiring and increasing market penetration.
Founded in January 2021 by Juhi Dang, Mohjo aims to “deliver 100 per cent clean foods” and beverages developed from plants with chemical-free ingredients via its own facility. The direct-to-consumer foodtech brand recently launched its first line of products — almond milk and almond milk-based beverages in Singapore.
“Most commercially available dairy alternatives are nutrient-low and stabiliser-heavy. They contain 95-98 per cent water, are laced with additives, and either tastes bad or have no taste at all,” said Dang as she was lactose-intolerant and struggled to find a tasty type of plant-based milk when moving to Singapore. “Mohjo is a result of me trying to solve these problems as a consumer of dairy-alternative products myself.”
In Singapore, Mohjo is expanding rapidly across operations, sales, and marketing functions.
“We are looking for passionate and ambitious folks who believe that we can change the planet with the choices we make at mealtimes,” she added. “Mohjo is building an inclusive workplace where business is done the right way.”
The market for dairy alternatives is gaining momentum and acknowledging a rising demand, inevitably driven by the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic wherein people reconsider their diets.
East Ventures anticipates the digitally native brand could grow by integrating innovations into both products and consumer service, thus delivering standardised clean, plant-based foods and beverages to the markets.
Dairy alternatives is a ~$23-billion market globally, expected to grow at ~12.5 per cent CAGR between 2021 and 28. The Asia-Pacific region dominates this market with a ~44 per cent market share, according to Grand View Research. The rising lactose intolerance, consumers’ increasing focus on healthier choices, rising number of flexitarians, and increasing ethical and environmental concerns of consuming dairy have reinforced the booming market for dairy alternatives.
In recent years, Singapore has nurtured more startups leveraging technologies to create tasty plant-based food from natural ingredients, as an effort to strengthen national self-sufficiency and lower its carbon footprint. Plant-based chicken TiNDLE, diabetes foodtech innovation Alchemy Foodtech, cell-based shrimp Shiok Meats, lab-grown dairy and human breast milk TurtleTree Labs, and other foodtech startups are forging ahead to make Singapore the alternative proteins capital of Asia.
Image credit: Mohjo
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