The world’s largest food and beverage company has announced it’s exploring precision fermentation technologies, and later this year will pilot a novel product made with Perfect Day’s animal-free protein.

According to a company statement, the announcement “complements investments the company has made in plant-based meat and dairy alternative offerings over the years to meet the growing consumer demand for nutritious, more environmentally friendly diets that also taste great.”

Nestlé will pilot a “test and learn” product in the US later this year, created through the company’s US R&D Accelerator, an initiative focused on bringing highly differentiated procut concepts to market in just six months.

To make this a reality, Nestlé partnered with Perfect Day, a California-based food tech company that created the world’s first nature-identical dairy protein using precision fermentation.

Perfect Day’s protein is identical to whey protein in cow’s milk and is also suitavble for vegan and lactose-free consumers.

“We are excited to pilot Nestlé’s first animal-free dairy protein-based products through our US R&D Accelerator,” said Joanna Yarbrough, head of the R&D Accelerator. “While this category is still very young, we know consumers are looking for products that have a reduced environmental footprint, and we are evaluating this avenue as a future growth opportunity for our business.”

Nestlé’s announcement follows similar news released recently by Mars, which has also partnered with Perfect Day to launch an animal-free chocolate product in the US.

Myprotein, the world’s largest online consumer sports nutrition brand, is also using Perfect Day’s protein, featuring it in a new range of animal-free protein powder.

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