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YAMO- The story of Europe’s leader in children’s organic food

The story of YAMO- a leader in organic children food for young kids and toddlers is quite an interesting one. The founders of yamo stumbled upon a shortcoming of the baby food sector and decided to do something about it, which lead to the inception of yamo. Read on to know more about this start-up!

Yamo is a food-tech start-up that focuses on the baby food sector. The baby food industry is run by companies that have been in the race for quite some time. Their long-standing presence is seen as a factor for trust by consumers when choosing food for feeding their young. But a common factor to be noticed among all products provided by these big-players is that these food are rather “unnatural”. Meaning most of this food is heat-sterilized products that make up for better shelf life for these products but take a toll on the natural vitamins of the product. This is made up for by additional fortification with nutrients, which results in a product with next to no natural vitamins, colour, taste, or smell.

The Gap and how yamo filled it

Today as consumer awareness about healthy, ethical, and sustainable food is rising, the focus is falling on “natural” and “fresh” foods. But when it comes to retail options for baby food, there’s no natural or fresh to be seen anywhere. This is a major reason why most parents prefer to feed their children with homemade food. But for working and struggling parents this may not be the most feasible go-to option.

What the baby food industry needs is a new line of products that are natural, fresh, and made with technology that aids the nutrition profile of the food and not hampers it.

Yamo a leader in organic children food realized this gap and decided to become the one to fill it up. And fill it, they did! All the while making a successful business out of it. So here’s the story of this novel food-tech start-up.

The story behind the inception of yamo

What started as a fun challenge, turned into a saddening realization, which in turn, turned into yamo-a Swiss food-tech start-up!

Let’s start from the beginning to make more sense. Back in 2016, three friends, Tobias Gunzenhauser, José Amado-Blanco, and Luca Michas took up a challenge to go vegan for a month. This leads them to rummage the supermarkets and product labels for healthy animal-free products. They found this to be quite a demanding task. So to make things easier they decided to look for food in the section perceived as most healthy at supermarkets – the baby food section.

To their disappointment, they found no fresh products but rather products whose shelf-lives were older than the babies they were made for. This conundrum made them think and realize the gaping hole that was present in the baby food market. This is how they got their “great idea”, quit their jobs, and started yamo.

What’s Novel about yamo

The yamo brand found its origin in 2016. The three inquisitive and enthusiastic friends became the now CEO Tobias Gunzenhauser, COO José Amado-Blanco, and CMO Luca Michas of the company. The founders’ main motive behind creating yamo was to give parents healthier and easy food choices for their young children. This vision turned yamo into a leader in organic children’s food.

Founders of Yamo

And they are doing this with their range of healthy products bringing a breath fresh air to the baby food section. Their product portfolio is classified on the basis of the age-groups of children.
Its products are available online via a direct-to-consumer subscription model and through grocery stores. This is a unique feature of Yamo because it allows parents to customize their orders. Yamo has established its presence in a number of grocery stores, including Coop in Switzerland.

They are also running trials in select Edeka and Rewe stores in Germany. With the new funding, yamo aims to expand to France and is planning to launch new products for children. Another defining feature of yamo products is that they are using HPP- high-pressure pasteurization in their processing methods. This eliminates the disadvantages caused by its heat-intensive alternative and ensures a product with an intact natural nutritional profile.

“We have been leading on the use of HPP in the infant food market and we’ve been able to convince our partners to adapt their stores to ensure our fresh food can be stocked. We now see fridges amongst the dry baby food shelves of supermarkets – something we were told would be impossible to achieve! We’re working with leading retailers across DACH and excited to take the next step to explore the French market.” says Tobias Gunzenhauser, CEO, and Co-Founder of yamo.

Funding history

Yamo a leader in organic children food has passed through three rounds of funding, bringing its total raised revenue to
€10.1M. Their latest funding was raised on Jul 9, 2020, from a Series A round. Five seasons venture was one of the lead investors. The company has strong visions for its future and as mentioned before is already mapping plans for expansion.

Today’s challenges require the acumen of curious minds like those of the founders of yamo to create sustainably viable solutions. Yamo’s presence in the playfield has surely answered to long-standing challenges relating to healthy and fresh baby food. Although many similar start-ups are popping in the baby-food business, the mark made by yamo in this sector is commendable.

Read more: Success stories of Startups

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