We are so happy to announce that award-winning, free-from dessert brand Freaks of Nature are one of our sponsors for Vevolution Festival this year. It has been a busy few months for them with their full re-brand, the launch of their dairy-free yogurt alternatives, and the launch of their hot puddings.
We had the opportunity to learn more about Freaks of Nature, and share their awesome message with all of you guys! Peter Ahye tells us about the importance of being different, what it’s like being a free-from brand, and the future for Freaks of Nature.
Why did you make the decision to be free-from/vegan-friendly?
It is fair to say it chose me rather than the other way around. However, having tried lots of the products on the market at the time from breads, biscuits, yogurt alternatives and plant-based ice cream, it was clear that innovation and product quality could be improved.
I remember asking my wife “do people lose their taste buds when they become vegan or have to eat free from products?”
Further the increased awareness of animal welfare and other issues more recently, including a race to the bottom in terms of food being packed with junk, meant that I wanted to be able to have and provide great alternatives to products containing dairy, high levels of white sugar and artificial ingredients. Making vegan and free from more accessible is a key mission as it can be tough and very inconvenient to say the least to get convenient good quality products.
What would you say the ethos is at ‘Freaks of Nature’?
Focus on innovation, great tasting products and all done with passion and pride.
What inspired the name ‘Freaks of Nature’?
We believe everyone has a little freak in them. Carefree, bold and wanting to fly their flag.
What do you think sets your products apart from other brands?
We are the only start up in the UK which manufactures its own yogurt alternatives, cold serve desserts and hots puds. Everything is plant based and some of our latest products are free from the top 14 allergens.
Why did you want your products to be a healthier alternative to traditional yogurts and puddings?
More and more people are demanding healthier great tasting alternatives. I wanted to create a brand that could bring yogurt alternatives.
What is the biggest challenge that you face being a free-from company?
Making sure the innovation can be scaled up and finding ingredients that make the final product affordable. Also the plastic debate isn’t properly balanced and we risk creating product quality and shelf life issues.
Do you think it's important for new businesses to stand out from the crowd, and be different?
Absolutely, otherwise you get lost in a sea of mundaneness!
Apart from your recent launches, do you have any more plans for the near future?
We continue to work with existing customers and potential customers to find a solution for their consumers in the UK. We have made our first exports and signs are good. We have a locker full of NPD which will continue to take us towards delivering great products which are also vegan and free from and could be enjoyed by 98% plus of the UK population if they wanted to try them. That way we can make households more inclusive and starting to share the same products again.
By having our own state of the art UK production facility, which is rare for a start-up, we can move quickly from development to production and be very hands on with our products.
We also look forward to our foray into foodservice and food to go over the next 12 months as we believe there is a large opportunity to support consumers when they eat out as well.
HAVE YOU BOOKED YOUR TICKETS TO THE BIGGEST AND BEST VEVOLUTION FESTIVAL YET?
There will be talks, workshops, panels, plant-based food, and more at the Festival this year - and it will all be held at the iconic BFI on London’s Southbank. We can’t wait to see you all - it’s going to be a great one!