Posted in: Denmark

Lakrids by Bülow's Founder on creating an iconic brand

If you’ve been to the Nordics, odds are you’ve tried licorice. In today’s episode, we dive into the story of the luxury licorice and chocolate company Lakrids by Bülow. Johan Bülow started cooking licorice in his mom’s kitchen on the Danish island of Bornholm in 2007. Fast forward to today and they’ve become an iconic brand with sales in 35 countries and counting. Their mission: to make the world love licorice. This episode traces the evolution of the company, diving into valuable lessons around food entrepreneurship, branding, and sales.

Episode Transcript

Posted in: Denmark

The Miracle of Hemp on the Island of Bornholm

Signe Anker is the Co-Founder of Bornholmerhampen. She and her partner were some of the first people in Denmark to start growing hemp again. Today, they hand harvest it to produce teas, flours, oils, and cosmetics on the beautiful Danish island of Bornholm. In this episode, we explore why it’s considered a miracle crop, how it’s making a comeback, and the roots of its bad reputation.

As a listener of the podcast, get 20% off all Bornholmerhampen products using the code NORDICFOODTECH at checkout.

Episode Transcript

This episode was first published on October 16, 2020

Posted in: Denmark

The Story of Denmark's Billion Kroner Investment Into Plant-based

In October 2021, the Danish government announced that it was allocating 1 billion kroner or 168 million euro to ramp up plant-based food production. This is one of the largest investments into plant-based by any country to date. Join me and Rune-Christoffer Dragsdahl, the Secretary General of The Vegetarian Society of Denmark, as we discuss the details of the agreement and what it means for the future. It’s not just about politics, it’s also about culture, history, and relationships.

  • 9:30 The history and cultural significance of vegetarianism 
  • 19:00 How the Vegetarian Society of Denmark got started
  • 42:00 Details of the agreement
  • 56:00 Tips for other countries looking to do something similar
Posted in: Denmark

Chromologics' CEO Gerit Tolberg on natural vs artificial food colorants

There is a big trend in the food and cosmetic industry to move away from artificial colors and flavors, replacing them with natural ingredients. Gerit Tolborg is the CEO of Chromologics. Gerit describes herself as an accidental entrepreneur. Through her research at the Danish Technical University, she stumbled upon a way to naturally produce a red colorant using fungi and fermentation. Listen in as we discuss the business of artificial and natural ingredients, what it takes to build an R&D heavy startup, and the journey of becoming an entrepreneur when you never thought that was in the cards.

  • 2:09 Why companies are moving away from artificial colors
  • 9:40 Producing colors through precision fermentation
  • 16:00 How Chromologics started
  • 23:00 Building an R&D heavy startup 
  • 41:00 Challenges of being a female CEO

Full episode transcript. For more conversations, join our community on Instagram Like what you hear? This is a listener-supported podcast. Show your love by subscribing for a few dollars every month. 

Artist Alexandra Genis on 3D printing flavor molecules

Listen again. Artist and food designer Alexandra Genis is set on challenging your notion of artificiality and what sustainability means in the context of food production. Are natural and wild foods really better? We explore her work and how artificial foods, technology, and art can help us reimagine a better food system.

  • 1:50 The Atoma project, turning individual molecules into spices
  • 2:48 The complexity of flavor and the limits of what we can taste
  • 10:45 The importance of artificial foods in a post-agricultural age 
  • 22:00 Other projects Alexandra’s worked on 
  • 24:00 Vision for the future food system

Full episode transcript. Subscribe to the podcast newsletter here.

Posted in: Denmark

Coffee Collective's Klaus Thomsen on creating sustainability and transparency across the coffee supply chain

Klaus Thomsen is one of the Founders of Coffee Collective. Their goal is to explore and unfold exceptional coffee experiences, in a manner that gives better living conditions to coffee farmers across the globe. For nearly, 15 years they have been pushing the coffee industry to do business differently. In this episode, we discuss their many initiatives from transparently sharing what they pay for coffee to going carbon neutral by 2022. Their dream is for a coffee farmer in Kenya to obtain the same status and living conditions as a winegrower in France. 

  • 11:30 What creates great taste across the supply chain
  • 19:30 Paying farmer’s a fair price 
  • 24:00 Direct trade and opening up the books for transparency
  • 33:00 Creating a market for specialty coffee
  • 50:30 Going carbon neutral by 2022

If you like this episode, check out this podcast with Tim Wendelboe who runs a roastery and coffee shop in Norway as well as a coffee farm in Columbia. We further explore what creates great taste and sustainability in coffee. For more conversations, join our community on Instagram or check out other episodes on www.nordicfoodtech.io.

Posted in: Denmark Norway Sweden

OceanHarvest Founder Joachim Hjerl on regenerative ocean farming

Regenerative ocean farming has been identified as a key solution to climate change. It’s the practice of growing seaweed along with several kinds of shellfish like oysters and mussels not just to feed people, but also to heal the oceans. HavHøst or OceanHarvest is an NGO helping communities throughout the Nordics get set up with toolkits to grow, harvest, and eat from the sea without harming nature or existing underwater ecosystems. In this episode, Joachim Hjerl shares how a crazy idea of growing 20 oysters in Copenhagen’s central harbor became a movement of blue community gardens. 

  • 7:30 An intro to regenerative ocean farming 
  • 14:30 Growing a network of community-supported farms
  • 23:00 Working with policymakers to enable solutions 
  • 36:00 Creating a market to support supply
  • 43:00 Cultural acceptance around new foods 

For more conversations, join our community on Instagram or check out other episodes on www.nordicfoodtech.io.

Posted in: Denmark

Alchemist's Diego Prado on the R&D behind Holisitic Cuisine

Diego Prado is the Head of R&D at Alchemist Explore – the research and development arm of restaurant Alchemist focused on making new dishes and conducting scientific research on products and techniques that create future building blocks for technology. Alchemist was founded in 2015 by Rasmus Munk and introduced a new approach to gastronomy called Holistic Cuisine, which looks at the whole instead of the parts. In this episode, we explore how the Alchemist brings artists, designers, engineers, researchers and chefs together to challenge food as we know it.

  • 10:20 An intro to Holistic Cuisine
  • 14:40 Restaurant Alchemist vs the R&D Test Kitchen
  • 22:30 Academic papers as a foundation for new dishes
  • 28:30 What food will look like in space
  • 38:30 Eating invasive species from jellyfish to butterflies

For more conversations, join our community on Instagram or check out other episodes on www.nordicfoodtech.io.