How it all started
New Roots is the result of Alice & Freddy's very big dream: transforming the Swiss dairy landscape from animal to plant.
It took a lot of work, dedication, intrepidity, and a pinch of craziness, like big dreams do. Alice studied Social Anthropology in Paris, while Freddy was travelling around the globe with his downhill bike racing World Cups. So I guess you could say we weren’t exactly predisposed to end up making cheese out of plants.
The idea from the start was not to copy the taste and texture of animal-based cheese, but to make authentic artisan cheese
As new vegans, we heard our fair share of myths about “happy cows” or “humane slaughter”, but what came up most often was how people apparently couldn’t live without cheese.
We got it, we grew up loving cheese too (after all, Alice is French and Freddy is Swiss!). But we no longer thought our taste buds were worth exploiting and killing animals. That got us wondering : what if we could discard this excuse altogether and come up with an artisan, tasty, ethical and sustainable alternative to cheese? At that time, most ofthe dairy alternatives were full of additives, and didn’t really taste anything like the original products, so we had a big challenge on our hands!
When Freddy got seriously injured in 2014 and had to stay home for months, he started experimenting in our kitchen, making cheese alternatives from homemade nut milk. He also contacted Swiss cheese-makers who taught him how to work with cheese cultures, and the ancestral art of cheese fermentation and ripening. The idea from the start was not to copy the taste and texture of animal-based cheese, but to make authentic artisan cheese, only with a different raw material, more respectful of the animals, the planet and people’s health.
We offer products with a message: animals are not resources for humans.
We started selling our first cheeses on the local organic market in Thun, and in a local health food shop. We moved our tiny makeshift cheese factory to our first official production facility – an old bakery – and bought all kinds of scary equipment to further our tasty projects!
The rest is history! Being able to combine our love for traditions and our love for justice for all has been rewarding on all levels, and we are so thankful to be able to share our dream with you all.
This is what a small start up without any resources learning the craft of vegan cheese-making looks like!