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EverGrain: Elevating overlooked food ingredients to cut down waste

EverGrain, funded by AB InBev’s venture arm ZX Ventures, is revolutionizing the use of barley by bringing the spent brewer’s grain to snacks and plant-based milk markets. The company’s mission is to help build a more sustainable future for the food industry by upcycling and elevating the uses for overlooked ingredients.

Spent grain is rich in protein and nutrients. During its production process, EverGrain separates and filters the protein and fiber from one another. What is left is a “super high protein isolate” that performs and behaves very similarly to dairy and whey protein. EverGrain currently offers two ingredients created from beer production waste: EverPro and EverVita. Both have high protein content and are highly adaptable.

The company is introducing its spent barley products to foods and beverages through partnerships with companies like Nestlé and Post Holdings.

From its conception, EverGrain has been repurposing about 50 tons of barley each year at its small-scale production facility. In 2022, the company entered large scale production of its barley protein, opening a new facility backed by a $100m investment from AB InBev. 

The small size of EverGrain, coupled with the recent multimillion-dollar investment to build a larger plant, means the company is yet to return a profit. However, as the food waste business is forecast to grow 4.6% during the next decade and buyers’ purchasing decisions are increasingly influenced by sustainability, there are good revenue prospects for companies able to tackle the challenges of viscosity and solubility and provide ultra-high plant-based protein.