Plant-based milks are becoming a popular alternative to dairy-based options both for health reasons and environmental concerns; producing dairy milk results in three times more gas emissions than plant-based alternatives and requires nine times more land. Coconut, almond, soy, and oat are among the most common plant-based milks but there are other varieties available from hemp, pea, cashew, quinoa, macadamia, rice, flax, and even hazelnut. Numilk is bringing the benefits of plant-based milks to your home and to your café. Initially, the company started with large kiosks in supermarkets that allowed customers to make their own milk. Now Numilk is bringing that convenience to the home. They’ve developed an appliance that produces plant-based milk from the pouches similar to a Nespresso machine. The pouches only contain organic, pure, whole food without any preservatives, processed, sweeteners, gums, or fillers and produces 16oz for the consumer version; the industrial version forcafés produces 32oz. Numilk is currently taking pre-orders starting at $149 with the retail price expected to be $299 at launch. The team recently appeared on Shark Tank and closed $2M in funding from Mark Cuban.
AlleyWatch caught up with Cofounders Ari Tolwin and Joe Savino to learn more about the benefits of plant-based milks, the company’s future plans, and much, more.
Tell us about the product or service that Numilk offers.
Numilk is on a mission to bring plant-based, less waste to all through our innovative Numilk machines. Make plant-based milks, lattes, and protein shakes at the push of a button, delicious, nutritious, and free from gums, fillers, or preservatives and without the waste associated with pre-packaged food. Better for you, and better for the environment. Plant-based, less waste. Made by you.
How is it different?
Numilk is the first easy-to-use and no-waste in-home plant-based milk maker.
What market does Numilk target and how big is it?
Global milk $40B.
What is the business model?
We make awesome fresh plant-based milk machines and provide all the pure, organic ingredients they require to make the best plant-based milks, lattes, and protein shakes.
What inspired the start of Numilk?
We love almond milk…and oat milk…and plant-based lattes and protein shakes. But we hate buying heavy, bulky pre-packaged plant-based milks that had been shipped all over the country. Pretty much the opposite of carbon neutral. Carbon terrible, to be exact. And we dislike buying single-use bottles or cartons. We also didn’t like that most pre-packaged plant-based milks contain gums, fillers and/or preservatives. Plus, they don’t taste very good. So, we decided to do something about it. With Numilk, you make your own delicious, clean plant-based milks, lattes, and protein-based shakes in less than a minute. And we promise you’ll be astonished at the delicious, creamy taste.
How has COVID-19 impacted the business?
COVID made us become laser-focused on Numilk Home and Pro, to always be able to reach our customers regardless of what the world throws at us.
What are the milestones that you plan to achieve within six months?
Continuing to expand Numilk Pro to coffee shops and grocers across the US, as well as continuing the pipeline to launch the Numilk Home in 2022.
What is the one piece of startup advice that you never got?
To stay level – the ride is a rollercoaster. Also keeping a holistic view of the vision, as it can be easy to get caught in the minutia of the day-to-day.
If you could be put in touch with anyone in the New York community who would it be and why?
Chloe Coscarelli – she is a pioneer, making plant-based more approachable.
Why did you launch in New York?
New York is where we (still) live, and offers an amazing ecosystem for entrepreneurship of all kinds.
What’s your favorite outdoor dining restaurant in NYC?