A new product will soon be introduced to the University of Connecticut’s on-campus dining experience: a vegan, eggless mayonnaise called “Just Mayo.”
The product is also plant-based, cleanly labeled and verified by the Non-GMO Project, culinary manager Robert Landolphi said. The ingredients are all recognizable and can be easily pronounced: canola oil, white vinegar, organic sugar, salt, pea protein, spices, modified food starch, lemon juice concentrate, fruit and vegetable juice and calcium disodium EDTA (for freshness).
“’What would it look like if we started over?’ That’s the question that fuels all of us at Hampton Creek. We started this company because we deeply believe that eating well should be easy,” Hampton Creek said on its website.
“Just Mayo” is one of a few products made by Hampton Creek, a food company new to the food industry, dedicated to making eating simple, healthy and affordable. The company also offers raw, edible cookie dough as well as baked cookies (foodservice only). They distribute to large facilities – including many other colleges, universities and grocery stores.
“Hampton Creek is just a great company,” Landolphi said. “They’re an up-and-coming food company, and they have a very interesting mission – it’s all about sustainability and knowing what we put in our body.”
The jar’s label shows an egg with a bean sprout going through it, to depict the idea of using plant-based ingredients in place of eggs. In 2014, Unilever, the mother company for Hellmann’s Mayonnaise, sued Hampton Creek, claiming that their label was false advertising and thus misguided customers. The lawsuit only sparked controversy and drew even more attention to Hampton Creek’s products, causing Unilever to drop the suit altogether, according to The New York Times.
“In the past, any egg-free mayonnaise used to be like Vegenaise, and it was not very good,” Landolphi said. “This is actually delicious.”
“Just Mayo” will be used in the kitchens for meal line dishes, as well as provided for students in the deli area. However, the company does not offer a pump system option, so dining services will continue to use Ventura and Hellmann’s mayonnaise pumps in the dining halls.
“’Just Mayo’ is actually a bit more expensive. And I think the reason is probably because, again, they’re using non-GMO ingredients, and it’s a new company,” Landolphi said. “I think that as more and more consumers start to support the company, you’re actually going to see the price go down.”
While Landolphi thinks students won’t even notice the change, he said it’s important to evaluate products once in a while and make sure smart choices are being made. He hopes Hampton Creek will come out with other products that UConn can utilize in the future.
“Just Mayo” will make its debut in the dining halls near the end of next week. Dining services is in the process of making sure they source enough to keep up with demands once they start using the mayonnaise.
“I think it’s a win for us and it’s a win for Hampton Creek because we’re going to use quite a bit of mayo over the next school year,” Landolphi said.