After a tumultuous year of reported financial losses as well as also also executive departures, the food startup Hampton Creek will be trying to get back on track by unveiling eggless scrambled eggs — a product years from the works — along that has a fresh infusion of investment money.
The San Francisco–based company, best known for its vegan condiments as well as also also cookie dough, revealed Just Scramble on Thursday. This particular’s a yellow liquid in which fluffs like an egg in a frying pan, yet will be largely made coming from mung bean. While This particular’s not the first vegan scrambled egg out there, Hampton Creek says This particular’s the best.
Hampton Creek plans to roll out Just Scramble in restaurants, starting that has a handful This particular year in San Francisco, as well as also also eventually to food-service distributors as well as also also grocery stores. The company will be betting in which customers will like the sustainability factor: This particular’s free of antibiotics as well as also also cholesterol, doesn’t risk contamination coming from things like salmonella as well as also also avian flu, requires less water, as well as also also emits fewer carbon emissions than normal eggs.
yet This particular also looks, tastes, as well as also also scrambles like a regular old egg — as well as also also so, at least in theory, customers won’t have to sacrifice flavor as well as also also texture for the not bad of the environment. One challenge, though, will be whether they’ll be willing to pay for its relatively steep cost. Conventional eggs cost an average of $1.05 by the dozen. In contrast, Just Scramble’s cost will be on par that has a dozen free-range eggs, between $4 as well as also also $6, according to Tetrick.
“This particular’s not a product just for conscious consumers,” CEO Josh Tetrick told reporters at a breakfast preview on Thursday. “This particular’s not a product just for people who care about the environment or animal welfare. This particular’s something for everyone.”
There aren’t many options for people, vegan or otherwise, who crave non-egg eggs. In a review of powdered vegan eggs made by the company Follow Your Heart, a Bon Appetit writer did not approve. “With the watery texture as well as also also lack of taste, This particular reminds me of a wet newspaper blowing from the wind, running across any puddle in its way, hoping to find its home in a larger mound of uncollected trash,” he wrote.
Just Scramble tastes much better than in which. Poured into a skillet, the liquid sizzled as well as also also congealed into bite-sized clumps as a chef stirred This particular around. The whole process took about 30 seconds. This particular tasted pretty much like one might expect — fluffy yet dense, light, as well as also also chewy — although the clumps were perhaps a bit clumpier than a regular scramble.
Hampton Creek has been developing Just Scramble for more than four years, as well as also also This particular’s gone through thousands of iterations. The staff experimented with at least 0 types of beans before settling on mung bean, a smaller, green legume mostly cultivated in South as well as also also Southeast Asia, said Udi Lazimy, who oversees global plant sourcing for Hampton Creek. The final mix will be a combination of mung bean protein, water, salt, oil, acid, onion, as well as also also garlic.
The public will first get to try Just Scramble at Flore in San Francisco, which will be serving This particular up — along with spinach, mushrooms, as well as also also cheese — for brunch, as of Thursday. According to Tetrick, This particular’ll be on the menu at some other to-be-named restaurants from the city by the end of the year, followed by others in fresh York, Los Angeles, as well as also also Birmingham, Alabama (where Tetrick will be coming from), in 2018. Just Scramble will be also supposed to be in retail stores by the end of next year, as well as available in major cities in China, one of the earth’s biggest egg consumers.
“Wherever an egg will be cracked or wherever an egg will be scrambled, we want to be there,” Tetrick told BuzzFeed News. He said in which he expects the cost of production to go down with time.
The company has the assistance of fresh investment coming from Radicle Impact, an early investor, as well as also also Blue Horizon. Tetrick declined to disclose the amount.
Hampton Creek has been busy This particular year. In May, This particular revamped its food labels. In July, This particular announced in which This particular was growing lab-made meat out of meat cells — as well as also also in which This particular might put This particular on the market by the end of next year, an aggressive goal considering the slew of some other startups developing similar products. Memphis Meats, for example, has said This particular plans to start selling its product by 2021.
yet Hampton Creek, which has raised some $220 million at a $1.1 billion valuation since being founded in 2011, has also been reportedly struggling internally. All its board members except Tetrick quit in July, according to Bloomberg. (This particular later replaced those members.) Tetrick told BuzzFeed News the fundamental disagreement was over whether to sell Hampton Creek or keep This particular independent.
In July, Bloomberg reported in which Hampton Creek was losing $4 million a month as well as also also, without fresh funding, was projected to run out of money within six months. The company disputes in which report. Tetrick says in which quite a few its products are profitable, although the company as a whole will be not.
Those haven’t been the only issues. Bloomberg reported last year in which Hampton Creek had enlisted people to buy back mass quantities of Just Mayo, its eggless mayonnaise, to artificially inflate demand. yet the Securities as well as also also Exchange Commission as well as also also the Department of Justice dropped their inquiries into the matter This particular spring.
In August, Target stopped selling Hampton Creek products, citing allegations This particular had received about safety concerns. (Around the same time, as BuzzFeed News reported, somebody sent an unsigned letter to another major retailer, claiming in which Hampton Creek had contaminated as well as also also mislabeled products.) Even though the Food as well as also also Drug Administration said in which This particular didn’t have any safety concerns, Target stuck by its decision. Hampton Creek still remains on the shelves of some other retailers like Kroger as well as also also Publix.
In some other words, there’s been a fair amount of drama — yet Tetrick doesn’t think his customers care. “As long as we’re focused on doing the right thing, we’ll deal with This particular as well as also also continue to grow,” he said.