The challenge for companies focused on developing fermented alternatives to milk-based products that come from cows is to replicate the scale of a dairy farm. A large farm can have up to 15,000 cows, while a small farm will have between 1,000 and 5,000 animals. Cows are milked two to three times per day, with each producing between six and seven gallons daily.
Do the math, and you understand the enormous task facing this new breed of innovators in the alt. dairy space. Among companies in this space, the race is on to build out giant fermentation facilities to meet the potential demand. Remilk, a Tel Aviv-based firm using yeast-based precision fermentation to create a non-animal milk product, announced it would go big in tackling future production needs by securing 750,000 square feet at Kalundborg Denmark’s Symbiosis Project. The company says construction will begin by the end of 2022.
“Remilk has already started high-volume production in several locations around the world. The Danish facility will be our first fully owned facility, and production at this facility, the largest of its kind in the world, will begin as soon as the build-out is complete,” Remilk CEO Aviv Wolff told The Spoon. “Remilk is committed to reinventing the dairy industry in a kind, sustainable way. Eliminating the need for animals is the only way to supply our world’s growing demand without destroying the process.”
While Wolff didn’t provide specifics, he said that Remilk is working with leading consumer brands to craft recipes made with Remilk and believes the end products resulting from those collaborations will be available to consumers soon.
Wolff points to Remilk’s ability to create sustainable animal-free products that do not compromise on taste. Rather than compare his company’s efforts to competitors such as betterland farms, Wolff thinks his competition is milk and milk products that have been around for more than 10,000 years.
“To a large extent, we benchmark ourselves against traditional dairy proteins because that’s what we are looking to replace,” Wolff said. “Remilk can seamlessly replace cow-milk-based ingredients in consumer products because Remilk has the same characteristics, nutrition, and flavor profile with the advantage of being non-animal, thus free of lactose, cholesterol, hormone, and antibiotic residues.”
Remilk is far from alone in the world of precision-fermented dairy. Others include Real Deal Milk, Change Foods, Imagindairy (also in Israel), Formo, and betterland foods. A list of plant-based milk startups would be run several pages.