Tesco’s Vegan Brand Wicked Kitchen Raises $14 Million. Now It’s Jumping the Pond from UK to US stores.
Founded by chef brothers Chad and Derek Sarno, wildly popular vegan brand Wicked Kitchen made its mark on Tesco in the UK and is now bringing its plant-based products to 2,500 stores in the US.
by Anna Starostinetskaya, VegNews
July 15, 2021
Previously only available in the United Kingdom, vegan food brand Wicked Kitchen is making its way to retailers in the United States after raising $14 million in a series A funding round led by plant-based foods venture fund Unovis Asset Management and Thailand-based NRF Nove Foods. The brand was created by New England-born chef brothers Chad and Derek Sarno and first launched as a 20-item vegan food line at 600 Tesco supermarket locations in 2018, where it sold 2.5 million units in the first 20 weeks. Since then Tesco—where Derek Sarno serves as executive chef and Director of Plant-Based Innovation—has increased its offerings to more than 100 different Wicked Kitchen products in 15 categories and has made a five-year commitment to increase sales of its meat alternatives by 300 percent.
In the UK, Wicked Kitchen offers a variety of products developed to serve as convenient and exciting plant-based meal solutions, including prepared meals such as Spicy Mushroom and Veg Sourdough Pizza, Toasted Three Onion Dip, Mac Attack Salad Bowl; vegan meats such as Mexican Style M’Shroom Shreds, BBQ Fib Rack, and Wicked Chorizo Style Bangers; desserts such as Red Velvet Brownie, Sticky Toffee Pudding, and Lemon Cupcakes; and much more.
The brand’s US offerings will include its “tried and true” UK products and its culinary team will continue to innovate its portfolio to tailor to specific market needs.The company is currently in talks with several retailers and customers can expect to find 20 different Wicked Kitchen plant-based products in seven categories at 2,500 stores.
“The launch of Wicked Kitchen in the UK was met with really impressive consumer response, and since then Tesco has extended the line to more than 100 products across the store,” the Sarno brothers told VegNews. “We know the US consumer is limited in their plant-based options currently available to them, but we also know they haven’t had anything as wicked delicious as what Wicked Kitchen offers, and we look forward to hearing what they have to say about our products.”
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