Earlier this month, dairy-industry executive Tom Moffitt raised $11 million in venture financing to develop his plant-based brand Culture Fresh Foods through the purchase of a Connecticut production facility formerly owned by food giant Danone. Moffitt—who founded Vermont-based Commonwealth Dairy—aims to add 10,000 square feet of space to the 30,000-square-foot facility and rehire many of the 150 workers that lost jobs after Danone closed the facility. Once operational, the facility will produce Culture Fresh’s vegan yogurt and other non-dairy products and eventually expand to private-label production. To differentiate himself from other companies that make both vegan and non-vegan foods in the same production facility, Moffitt will only allow plant-based ingredients such as oats and almonds to be used on the premises to ensure his products are free from cross-contamination. To expand production of its own line of vegan yogurt, in February, Danone North America opened a 180,000-square-foot factory in Pennsylvania—the largest plant-based yogurt facility in the United States.
Dairy Exec Buys Danone Production Plant to Make Vegan Yogurt