Mark’s Seaweed Vegan Bacon Just Launched at These 3 Restaurants


Berkeley, Calif.-based food tech startup Umaro Foods has launched its first food product: vegan bacon made with algae-based protein. Umaro Bacon is now available exclusively at Michelin-starred gourmet restaurant Sorrel in San Francisco, New York breakfast restaurant Egg Shop and D’Andrews bakery cafe in Nashville.

Formulated with Umaro’s proprietary seaweed protein, the innovative bacon aims to replicate the sensory qualities of pork bacon. “We nailed crispy bacon,” Beth Zotter, co-founder and CEO of Umaro, said in a statement. “We’ve found a way to use seaweed in a whole new way to enhance not only the meat, but the unmistakable taste and texture of bacon fat.”

At the Michelin-starred Sorrel Restaurant, Umaro Bacon will be incorporated into Sorrel’s renowned tasting menu alongside a small bite of seasonal lettuce with white peach, jalapeno, cucumber and Umaro bacon. In a second offering, the company’s purified protein extract, sourced from nori, will be incorporated into Sorrel’s Parker House Rolls, served with a course of Wild Onion Creamed Caviar, to add flavor complexity. .

New York’s Egg Shop offers Umaro Bacon on its Egg Shop Bacon Egg and Cheese as a special item at its two locations in the Nolita and Williamsburg neighborhoods. It will also offer Umaro Bacon as a side or plant-based substitute in any dish that currently includes bacon. And at D’Andrews Bakery in Nashville, Umaro Bacon will be featured in its classic BLT.

Later this year, Umaro Foods will be available in other restaurants across the United States, including the Bay Area, Los Angeles and beyond.

Umaro Foods

Turning seaweed into sustainable vegan bacon

Founded by Zotter and Amanda Stiles, Umaro is the first company to develop and use concentrated red algae protein as an umami-enhancing ingredient in plant-based meat. The company’s origins began in the design of offshore seaweed cultivation systems, and it now focuses on providing branded consumer food products containing its proprietary Umaro red algae protein. Umaro’s mission is to develop a complete food system using this sustainable source of vegan protein.

Zotter and Stiles launched the company with a $5 million grant to design and engineer recently completed deep-sea algae farms in the Gulf of Maine. “Seaweed offers the most sustainable and least impactful way to source protein, and the ocean is our biggest protein bioreactor,” Zotter said. “It requires no soil, fresh water or synthetic fertilizer. In the future, algae will provide the majority of our protein needs.

The company’s bacon benefits from two exclusive innovations. The first is the company’s own patented protein, which it extracts from ocean-grown red seaweed and serves as a natural and functional substitute for heme, the red protein molecule that causes meat to “bleed.” vegetable and gives it a fleshy flavor. The second is the use of seaweed-based ingredients to encapsulate vegetable oils in a fat that crackles and crunches like animal fat.

“People often ask us what sets Umaro apart from other plant-based bacon alternatives,” Zotter said. “While our technology is certainly unique, the oily taste and texture that consumers [now] are lucky enough to experience for themselves really puts Umaro Bacon in a realm of its own.”


Umaro Foods

Vegan bacon wins $1 million shark tank

Umaro bacon’s foodservice launch follows a record-breaking bidding war for investment in the company and its product that recently aired on season 13 of the Umaro investment reality show. ABC, shark tank.

After Zotter and Stiles presented on shark tank with an initial request of $500,000 for a 2% stake, “shark” investor Kevin O’Leary offered them $500,000 for an 8% stake. When the Sharks asked what equity they would consider, Zotter and Stiles said they would be satisfied with $1 million for 8% – and Mark Cuban immediately made the offer. At the same time, Lori Greiner wanted to participate, offering $500,000 for 4% equity, but without dilution by funding rounds. Zotter and Stiles asked Cuban if he would make $1 million for 7% equity, and he agreed.

Cuban is known to have invested in several vegan businesses, including deli company Unreal Deli, black-owned meat brand Everything Legendary, dog food brand Wild Earth, snack brand Pan’s Mushroom Jerky, machine plant-based milk shaker Numilk and snack company Snacklins.

For more on vegan bacon, read:
Atlast will grow 3 million pounds of vegan mushroom bacon a year
World’s Largest Beef Company Says It’s Succeeded in Vegan Bacon
Gordon Ramsay just dropped a crispy vegan bacon recipe on TikTok

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