The Swiss CPG food giant will launch Wunda in France, the Netherlands and Portugal and announced European roll-out plans

Nestlé has announced the launch of Wunda, a new pea-based beverage that enters the market to compete with first-mover Oatly in the alternative milk segment.

Stefan Palzer, Nestlé chief technology officer, said: “This truly versatile, delicious pea-based beverage is an excellent source of protein and fibre. Its great neutral taste, the ability to use it for different applications and the fact that it is carbon neutral make it an ideal plant-based alternative to milk. Our young intrapreneurs created this great product based on their own consumer needs by leveraging our longstanding expertise in plant-proteins and dairy.”

Wunda will launch first in France, the Netherlands and Portugal, with a roll-out to other European markets planned. In addition to the original recipe, the Wunda range includes unsweetened and chocolate versions.

The range is made from yellow peas, which are known to provide high-quality protein. The ingredient is sourced in France and Belgium.

Nestlé argued that Wunda offer strong nutritional value compared to similar plant-based beverages on the market. “[Products] are high in fibre, low in sugar and fat, enriched with calcium and are a source of vitamins D, B2 and B12. The original, unsweetened and chocolate recipes all achieve a Nutri-Score A in Europe,” the company said in a statement.

Peas are also one of the most environmentally friendly sources of plant-based protein. The Wunda beverages are carbon neutral from launch and certified by the Carbon Trust. This is achieved through several measures along the supply chain such as using renewable energy in production, while reducing emissions during distribution. For emissions that cannot be eliminated, the brand will invest in high-quality offsetting projects.

Nestlé’s plant-based accelerator

Wunda was initially developed as part of Nestlé’s R&D Accelerator initiative. Working with a start-up mindset, Nestlé created and scaled up the new beverage in six months.

Nestlé´s plant-based innovators had access to the company’s unmatched dairy and plant protein expertise as well as proprietary technologies and small to medium scale equipment.

The company explained that Wunda aims to be a name people can trust for a range of plant-based products. The brand is already working on other innovations within the dairy alternative space, to give people new options for some of their favourites.

Cédric Boehm, head of dairy for Europe, Middle East and North Africa, said: “There is a quiet food revolution underway that is changing how people eat. In Europe, at least four in 10 shoppers are already choosing some dairy alternatives. People are asking for better plant-based drinks that are nutritious, versatile and taste great. We have the expertise in plant-based and experience in dairy to be at the forefront of this shift, and we’re sure people will be convinced by Wunda.”

Date published: 5 May 2021

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