Parmela Creamery raises $1.25m to become 'a national leader in the plant-based cheese category'

By Mary Ellen Shoup

- Last updated on GMT

Photo: Parmela Creamery
Photo: Parmela Creamery

Related tags Plant-based foods Cheese Investment

Cashew cheese brand Parmela Creamery has raised $1.25m in a seed financing round led by 25Madison to support the brand's ongoing innovation in the plant-based dairy category.

Parmela Creamery also received investment from the accelerator fund Gather Ventures.

According to Parmela​, it differentiates itself in the cheese alternative category by using traditional cheesemaking techniques such as culturing and aging the product for 30 days as part of its process to make cashew-based cheese alternative products. In addition to its nutcheese shreds, slices, sauces, blocks, and spreads, the company debuted a line of nutcheese ravioli at the Natural Products Expo West show earlier this year. 

"Our vision at Parmela is to honor the heritage of traditional cheese making while supporting a healthier, sustainable future,"​ said Parmela Co-founder Ry Salmone.

Since launching in 2014, Parmela has rapidly grown distribution and has products available in thousands of stores across the US including Publix, Whole Foods, and Wegmans. 

The investment will help fuel brand growth and strengthen brand awareness of Parmela, who is aiming to become the category leader in the plant-based cheese space leveraging 25Madison's "operating experience and deep connections"​ in the food industry. 

"25Madison and Gather Ventures are a perfect match for Parmela," ​said Ry Salomone, Co-Founder of Parmela.

"Their deep knowledge in the food space, serious appreciation for innovative plant-based foods and extensive industry network greatly impressed me,"​ said Salomone. 25Madison current portfolio of investments includes The Great American Turkey Co, Bou (a better-for-you line of seasoning cubes for soups and broths), and mushrooom chai brand MUD/WTR.

"The plant-based foods industry is seeing tremendous growth,​" said Steven Price, CEO and Co-Founder of 25Madison.

According to Nielsen xAOC sales data, the plant-based cheese category is worth $169m (growing 41% in dollar sales in the 52 weeks ending 8/11/18) and is sold in 61% of retail food stores, representing further opportunity for retail penetration. 

"Parmela will be a national leader in the plant-based cheese category by continuing to focus on its craft process, superior ingredients and sustainability,"​ said Price. 

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