| Category: Success stories

“Health awareness is a rising trend that we have to seize now.”

Ketoinen wants to be involved in health promotion

Can you promote health with grain-free bread? You sure can, according to Niina-Marika Lahnavik-Hoffren, the Managing Director of Ketoinen Oy.

Ketoinen is a company from Kuopio, Finland, whose product is a small grain- and gluten-free bread. The bread contains a lot of fibre and protein and is suitable for gluten-free, low-carbohydrate, ketogenic and fodmap diets.

Currently, research is used to investigate whether these diets could also be used to support the treatment of various diseases.

Managing Director Niina-Marika Lahnavik-Hoffren, (left), Operations Manager Anni Hoffren and Production Manager Nanna Mononen.

Ongoing research

Health promotion is the reason why Ketoinen wishes to be involved in the activities of the Kuopio Health open innovation system.

– Many of our partners are already involved in Kuopio Health and we have a brilliant research environment here. We are collaborating with the University of Eastern Finland and our aim is to explore the health benefits of Ketoinen, Lahnavik-Hoffren explains.

She believes that the company may also come up with and make use of joint development ideas with the other member companies. Meanwhile, Ketoinen can provide the members of the ecosystem with knowledge of food and, through this, contribute to health promotion. Health awareness is a rising trend that we have to seize now. 

A meteoric start

Ketoinen is one of the start-ups that emerged during the coronavirus pandemic. As her restaurant was struggling, Niina-Marika Lahnavik-Hoffren and her business partners had to come up with new ways to make money for paying salaries.

– It all partly started from our own needs, as gluten-free products were technically challenging in a restaurant environment. The bread rolls were prone to crumbling and drying up. We managed to develop a great product that is in very high demand.

The goal was to create low-carbohydrate bread that fits the ketogenic diet. The company achieved its goal: the Ketoinen bread contains less than 2 grammes of carbohydrates per 100 grammes. While the ketogenic diet was initially developed to reduce convulsions in epileptic patients, it has also gained popularity in other user groups.

Ketoinen had a meteoric start during its first year of operation. The bread is sold nationwide in the S Group, K Group and HalpaHalli chains. The company’s product is also already distributed to the Baltic counties and is about to enter the rest of the European market. In the public sector, municipalities and hospital districts are potential client groups.

The company currently employs 10 people and aims to be Europe’s leading manufacturer of gut-friendly foods by 2025. Lahnavik-Hoffren finds that one of the company’s advantages is that there are rather few products with known health effects in the market. Research evidence of the product’s effects is the best way to succeed.

Read more about Ketoinen

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