PRESS RELEASE — May 18, 2022 — World’s First Alt-Chocolate Sells Out in One Day
WNWN’s Limited Release of Cacao-Free Choc Thins Challenges ‘Big Choc’
LONDON, May 18, 2022 – The world’s first cacao-free chocolate launched today, a limited-release box of choc thins, and sold out in its first day online. WNWN Food Labs, a UK food tech startup addressing critical problems in food supply chains, uses plant-based ingredients that are fermented and roasted in a proprietary process to produce alt-chocolate that is child/slave labor-free, deforestation-free, palm oil-free, and releases 80% fewer CO2 emissions than chocolate.
In less than a year since its founding, WNWN (pronounced “win-win”) rapidly developed its proprietary method to transform sustainable ingredients into alt-chocolate that tastes, melts, snaps and bakes just like chocolate. Fermentation allows WNWN to develop the same flavor compounds found in cacao, encourage certain aromas, and even adjust the acidity to bring out notes found in premium single-origin chocolates. WNWN’s alt-chocolate is vegan, caffeine-free, gluten-free, lower in sugar than comparable products, and theobromine-free, making it safe for dogs.
WNWN’s first product, developed with an in-house chocolatier, starts with British barley—used for centuries in whisky and beer—and Italian carob as the base of WNWN’s cacao-free chocolate. The choc has notes of sticky toffee pudding, dates, cherries, and a rich, buttery finish. In blind taste tests alongside cacao-based dark chocolate, consumers described the products as “very similar.”
“The flavor profile of chocolate can include hundreds of different compounds that come from fermenting and roasting cacao beans, and we can achieve this using other ingredients that are sustainable and ethical,” said WNWN CTO Dr. Johnny Drain. “We’re not anti-chocolate, we’re anti-Big Choc, because the industry must be challenged to do better for the planet and the people whose labor it profits from.”
More than a million child laborers are estimated to work in Ivory Coast and Ghana, where three-quarters of the world’s cacao is grown. Cacao farming has led to the destruction of 85% of the rainforest there, leading to ecosystem collapse and the loss of habitat for dwindling populations of primates and other native animals. Cacao crops are also vulnerable in the face of climate change, with economic and environmental fluctuations posing additional threats to farmers and communities.
WNWN plans to explore how other foods can be future-proofed from changing climates, biodiversity loss, and from production monopolies that pay unfair wages and foster poor working conditions. These include coffee, tea and vanilla, which each have supply chains mired in unethical and unsustainable practices.
WNWN’s alt-choc was available beginning today exclusively at www.wnwnfoodlabs.com. Each box sold for £10 GB (about $12.50 U.S.), on a par with premium chocolate.
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About WNWN Food Labs (WNWN)
WNWN creates a win-win situation for consumers, workers, producers, and the planet. The London-based food tech company uses fermentation to transform plant-based whole foods and unloved ingredients into delicious, sustainable foods. For more information visit www.wnwnfoodlabs.com.