The investment arm of food corporation General Mills, 301 Inc., partnered with private equity firm 2X Consumer Products Growth Partners to invest in vegan company, D’s Naturals. In 2015, when he was just 18 years old, Daniel Katz launched D’s Naturals—which produces No Cow protein bars and dessert-flavored Fluffbutter nut butters. “Most protein bars are basically candy bars filled with whey protein, so very high in sugar,” 2X managing partner Whitman explained. “His product is very differentiated in that it’s high protein, low sugar, which there’s only a few of [them] out there, and is further differentiated because it’s plant-based.” 301 Inc.’s general manager John Haugen adds that D’s Naturals’ plant-based protein offerings are “very on-trend with what consumers are looking for today.” In addition to its recent investment into kale chip company Rhythm Superfoods, last year, General Mills was the lead investor in an $18 million funding round for vegan cheese company Kite Hill. Currently, General Mills plans to delve into the vegan industry by developing its own line of dairy-free products using ingredients such as fava beans, lentils, and adzuki beans.
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