Anina, an Israeli startup in the food technology industry, has announced a US$3.3 million seed round and the recent release of its newly created ready-to-eat plant-based meals manufactured from upcycled veggies.
The Kitchen Hub, Unovis, Unorthodox Ventures, AgFunder VC, Wordcreate Inc., and the Israeli Innovation Authority served as the round’s primary investors (IIA).
Anina was founded in 2020 by Anat Natan, Meydan Levy, and Esti Brantz with the goals of enhancing productivity, reducing waste, and reuniting customers with wholesome foods. According to the business, it has created a special, patented method that turns fresh, upcycled vegetables into flexible laminated sheets that can be bent into various shapes, adding gourmet food art to the experience of eating a quick meal for consumers.
Anina made headlines earlier this year when it revealed the creation of its plant-based ready meals packaged in capsules manufactured from recycled vegetables. Anina claimed to be disrupting the ready-meal business with the creative packaging approach.
“Anina is making a real impact on the food industry by mitigating food waste and turning it into innovative, plant-based products with an exciting look and feel. Anina is responding to a growing demand for making the most of unwanted veggies and turning them into something artistic that appeals to the eye and palette. said Anat Natan, Anina’s co-founder and CEO.
“Following the successful product launch in Israel and the positive feedback we received from American millennials, we are set to bring our products to the US.”
The Anina’s pod is a whole meal manufactured from rejected veggies that don’t satisfy market requirements and would otherwise go to waste, according to the business. The food will be contained in a capsule or pod made of these “ugly” veggies that have been laminated.
The development of the layers is the core of our technology, says Mor Wilk, vice president of R&D at Anina. “The heart of our technology is the creation of vegetable sheets. The flexibility of these sheets enables us to form any 3D structure and create any recipe in a decorative pod, each set to its unique controlled cooking time.”
Each pod, according to Anina, contains two entire cups of veggies, provides 40% of an adult’s daily nutritional needs, is high in protein and fiber, and is devoid of preservatives and dyes.
“We’re changing the way we eat, and we’re shaping the future for a meaningful culinary consumer experience. The Anina meal capsule also addresses today’s fast-paced lifestyle, which too often forces consumers to compromise on the quality of the food they eat,” said Anat Natan.
Three ready-to-eat food items from the Anina line, Pasta Primavera, Mediterranean Bowl, and Vietnamese Bowl, were just introduced in Israel. The items are accessible online, at luxury and boutique bakeries, and in co-working spaces.
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