Launched under its Vitalite brand, the cheese alternative is also the first product to be made for the dairy giant by Bute Island Foods, which was recently acquired by Saputo and makes the Sheese vegan cheese brand.
Saputo said it had developed the new line – which carries both vegan and vegetarian accreditation – in response to the “ever-growing demand for plant-based and dairy free alternatives”, which had seen 15% of Brits reduce their dairy or egg intake since the start of the pandemic [survey by the Vegan Society of 3,682 GB adults, 10-22 April].
Offering a three-month chilled life, the product is made from a coconut oil base and is preservative free. It is available to buy in a 2kg grated format or a variable weight bulk block.
The NPD had been “specially developed to help foodservice operators and food manufacturers satisfy the growing demand for vegan and plant-based dishes”, said Saputo Dairy UK marketing controller Emilie Grundy.
“Our innovation team have worked incredibly hard to achieve a product quality that delivers both the taste and performance of a true mozzarella and we have already received glowing commendations from third-party vegan food manufacture specialists.”
As the foodservice marketplace starts to open up post-pandemic, Grundy said there was a “real opportunity for the trade to satisfy this consumer demand with delicious and credible alternatives to cheese”.