Mumbai-based foodtech startup Wegan Foods has raised an undisclosed amount of funding from a member of the royal family of Sharjah and Ras Al Khaimah – Her Highness Sheikha Arwa Al Qassimi.
The funding will be used for scaling the commercial kitchen, inventory, and brand building.
Her Highness Sheikha Arwa Al Qassimi said, “I have invested in Wegan Foods in my personal capacity. I was impressed with the fact that Kinjal (founder) plans to have a 90% women workforce by hiring from organisations that groom and empower women from disadvantaged backgrounds. This is the biggest motivation for me. Globally, I have been an advocate for women’s rights and see this investment as a step in that direction.”
As per an official statement, Wegan Foods will initially be launched in Mumbai via modern trade and specific food delivery app platforms. The company is also aiming to set up a B2B network with restaurants, hotels, catering companies, coffee shop chains, and airlines.
The startup is planning to launch a range of healthy, dairy-free, pantry staples for the growing vegan community in India.
Kinjal Darukhanawala, founder and CEO of Wegan Foods said, “We are creating a range of products that are delicious and dairy-free. We aim to be an ethical and transparent brand, which will source the highest quality ingredients. Each product will be crafted in what we call ‘happy kitchens’ and not in labs or factories.”
Darukhanawala claims to be a vegan and health enthusiast. She looks to address the problem of scarcity of local vegan pantry staples available in India.
Wegan Foods’ first product, Dairy Free Cheese, will be launched in October 2017. This non-dairy cheese. The Vegan Cheese is soy-free, gluten-free.
“The first product development took close to six months. The idea is not just being vegan but also carrying a line of products that are delicious and nutritious for all age groups to devour. A lot of people have preconceived notions about vegan food. They think it is boring, tasteless, and far from original taste and flavour. Our brand plans to banish these notions,” she reiterated.
Currently places like Veganbites, Yogisattva, Vegan Tiffin, Bombay Bizzare Bakers, etc. provide vegan food in Mumbai.