VCF Foods has raised £2.5 million in seed funding as the York-based vegan food business looks to scale up domestically and overseas.
The company, which launched at the end of December 2020, already sells products in UK retail outlets and has completed its first expansion into Spain.
The funding round was led by vegan investment fund, Veg Capital, and includes investment from the senior leadership team and Johnson Resolutions.
Now, VFC Foods co-founder Matthew Glover – who is also co-founder of Veganuary and MD of Veg Capital – will become Chief Executive. Chef Adam Lyons, who created the product at his restaurant, Source on Castlegate, will continue to oversee operations.
The company said that the funds will be used to scale up production and accelerate the growth of the brand both in the UK and abroad.
VCF is targeting sales of £20 million by the end of 2023 and £50 million by the 2025.
“The launch phase has been phenomenally successful, with sales far exceeding our expectations, incredible food service and retail interest, as well as enquiries from more than 50 countries,” said Stewart McGuckin, Director of sales at VFC Foods.
“All this has shown us two things: we have a brand and a product that people really love, and that we are ready to shift up a gear.”
Says Cliff Johnson, financial adviser at Veg Capital, said: “VFC is exactly the type of company that Veg Capital looks to support.
“From the focus on removing as many animals from the food chain as possible to their unbashed activism, supporting the education on the impact of one’s dietary choices, we are proud to follow on from our pre-seed investment and support the team in their growth plans.”
Mr Glover added: “Our ultimate mission is to end factory farming, and so we are focused on driving efficiencies through our business that will allow us to compete directly with chicken on price, taste and convenience.
“I couldn’t be more thrilled with how the well the launch phase has gone. Now, with this funding, we can really scale up, and drive up that all-important chickens saved figure.”