Mine Uran, the founder and CEO of Alver, has been working and researching alternative proteins for the past 30 years – always looking for the perfect protein source. She was in search of a protein that does not originate from animals or consume large amounts of resources. This search eventually led Mine to the subject of algae. In 2014, Mine was invited to the White House in Washington to discuss food security. It was there she realised that the growing world population urgently needs protein-rich food that contains all the important nutrients and at the same time can be produced with fewer resources.
After years of working with different types of proteins, Mine discovered the Golden Chlorella algae strain and quickly realised that this algae combined all the desirable properties.
Mine eventually brought Majbritt Byskov-Bridges on board and together the two women founded Alver in 2016. Mine and Majbritt’s goal is to contribute to a sustainable and natural way of eating. Inspired by Norse mythology, the company was christened “Alver”, with alver meaning “elves” in Old Scandinavian. Elves are spirits of nature and therefore the perfect ambassadors and namesakes for a brand that has the well-being of the world and its inhabitants as its goal.
Mine and Majbritt quickly realized that there was a need among consumers for sustainable and healthy food. For example, the first crowdfunding was successfully completed back in 2017, allowing the first product to be launched in 2018. After two successful years in Switzerland, Alver is set off to conquer the rest of Europe.
Ana grew up abroad, graduated from the école hôtelière de Lausanne and then left the hospitality industry to pursue issues that are close to her heart. She wants to educate people about a more sustainable, nutritious and healthier lifestyle. In addition to her work in the hospitality industry, Ana has also gained experience in marketing for start-ups that specialize in food and events.
“I was impressed with Alver and the use of microalgae, which contain the most sustainable proteins on the planet, and most importantly, how easy they are to use. The resulting product offers so many possibilities that I just had to be a part of it! As the world moves on and people look for more alternative sources of protein, Alver will continue to grow and expand as we educate people about what matters most – which is to gradually save our planet. “
After working as a dietitian, Aslin decided to merge her nutritional background with food science and got a master’s degree in Food, Nutrition, and Health. During her scientific studies at Bern University of Applied Sciences, Aslin focused more on alternative protein sources to understand better how to feed the future population without harming the environment. Aslin believes in the idea of Chlorella being a future protein source as a superfood like the founders Mine and Majbritt. Aslin describes her motivation for working in Alver as: “I was amazed by all the innovative Alver products consisting of a sustainable protein source rich in nutrients. I appreciate being a part of the company, which promises good food for everyone, to be involved in the hidden part of the iceberg. The merge of research, development, and production in an ambitious small company is a great chance to use creativity for expanding the business. I am excited to participate in various projects from the idea to the end-product every day under the roof of Alver.”