There’s a brand new vegan cheese making its debut on Walmart retailer cabinets. This week, the mega retailer formally launched plant-based cashew cheese made by Misha’s at places in California, Utah, Nevada, Washington, Arizona, and Texas.
Beforehand solely obtainable at pure meals markets and specialty shops in choose areas, Misha’s launch at Walmart marks the Black-owned model’s official entrance into typical grocery retail chains.
Produced from cashew milk, Misha’s cheeses are blended with a medley of domestically sourced greens, spices, and herbs.
Obtainable in-store or on-line, Walmart consumers can select between 4 of the model’s signature cheeses: French Connection (made with herbs de provence, grains of paradise, and black olives); Smoked Cheddar (flavored with smoked paprika and chipotle); Sari (that includes sundried tomatoes, roasted garlic, and cilantro); and Black Truffle (made with actual truffles and shallots).
Misha’s partnership with Walmart will increase the variety of vegan cheese manufacturers obtainable on the mega retailer from 10 to 11, which in the end helps enhance the accessibility of plant-based dairy merchandise.
Whereas Misha’s preliminary Walmart launch is concentrated on shops throughout California, Utah, Nevada, Washington, Arizona, and Texas, a nationwide launch is within the works.
“We’re all anticipating this preliminary launch to go very properly after which we’ll see Misha’s on many extra Walmart cabinets across the nation,” Aaron Bullock, Misha’s co-founder and CEO, tells VegNews.
Misha’s makes vegan cheese for all
Based in 2018, Misha’s—formally referred to as Misha’s Sort Meals—made its world debut at farmers’ markets within the larger Los Angeles space, the place it developed a fan base amongst vegans and non-vegans alike.
Co-founder Ian Martin, a full-time musician and part-time vegan chef, was decided to create a decadent plant-based cheese not like another in the marketplace on the time. Martin took to his kitchen, the place he experimented with conventional cheese-making strategies sans dairy.
The primary main problem for Misha’s, Bullock notes, was creating a taste profile that appealed to quite a lot of tastes. “We needed to work tirelessly to get the cheese to be adequate for all the palates we have been focusing on, not simply vegans,” Bullock says.
As soon as Misha’s nailed its taste profile and easy, spreadable texture, it was time to tackle one other problem: scaling.
“[Our] group had to determine transfer this new, superb product from a small condo kitchen to a scalable manufacturing facility,” Bullock says. “This was no simple activity. We needed to take the tinkering of a pastime and convert it into an industrial, repeatable course of.”
After slinging their vegan cheeses at farmers’ markets, Bullock and Martin launched their product line to native pure meals and specialty grocers. Misha’s retail footprint grew from there, and earlier than touchdown on Walmart cabinets, the model had expanded its availability to specialty grocery shops in California, Texas, Hawaii, the Rocky Mountains, and the Pacific Southwest and Pacific Northwest areas.
Alongside the best way, Misha’s picked up a celebrity-studded roster of buyers. In 2021, music legend and enterprise mogul Jay-Z invested within the model by his agency Marcy Enterprise Companions (MVP). Jay-Z, alongside different movie star buyers together with NBA all-star Chris Paul, helped Misha’s elevate a $3 million seed funding spherical that very same 12 months.
“The mission of Misha’s straight aligns with our values. Once we first found Misha’s, we discovered some speedy synergies,” Jay Brown, co-founder of MVP, stated on the time. “We embrace corporations that worth sustainability, empowerment, inclusivity, accessibility, comfort, well being and wellness, and private expression.”
Immediately, Misha’s boasts a product line of seven vegan cheeses, all of that are paleo, keto, and Kosher Pareve, and freed from soy, vegetable oils, dietary yeast, starchers, and fillers.
Apart from the 4 flavors now obtainable at Walmart, Misha’s additionally produces Joi (infused with deseeded jalapeños, thyme, and oregano); Seven Level 5 (made with contemporary habanero and jalapeño peppers, plus strawberries for steadiness); and basic ricotta.
Following a nationwide enlargement with Walmart down the road, Bullock is concentrated on making Misha’s a pacesetter within the class. “When folks consider plant-based dairy, we wish them to say Misha’s,” he says. “After they consider vegan cheese, or dairy-free cheese, we wish them to say Misha’s.”
“Our plan is to well develop into the nationwide market and in the end discover a main associate who can assist us well develop onto the world stage,” Bullock says.