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Hope and Sesame® Barista Blend Sesamemilk Expands Distribution, Showcases Sesamemilk Café Beverages at 2023 Specialty Coffee Association Expo

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CHICAGO, IL and VANCOUVER, B.C. / ACCESSWIRE / May 17, 2023 – The Planting Hope Company Inc. (TSXV: MYLK) (OTCQB: MYLKF) (FRA: J94) (“Planting Hope” or the “Company”),

a plant-based food and beverage company focused on producing the world's most nutritious and planet-friendly products, is proud to announce that Hope and Sesame® continues to expand distribution of its Barista Blend Sesamemilk to influential distribution partners and leading fifth wave cafés across the US and Canada, including:

“We’re thrilled with the excitement around Sesamemilk as it’s embraced as the new ‘it’ milk by leading influential cafés and distribution partners," said Julia Stamberger, CEO and Co-Founder, Planting Hope. “Customers are citing a number of reasons why they’re thrilled by Sesamemilk, from taste, to fantastic performance in barista applications, to sustainability. In the ongoing evolution of the café industry, now entering its fifth wave of development, plant milk is quickly gaining traction in cafés, and Sesamemilk is entering this market at the right time and right place to become the next leading subcategory next to oat milk on the menu.”

The Plant Milk Revolution is Being Led by Gen Z – in Coffee Houses and Cafés
Multiple research reports suggest that Generation Z (“Gen Z”), the demographic cohort born between the mid-to-late 1990s and early 2010s, is turning against dairy milk: Pan-European dairy co-op Arla found that 49% of Gen Z felt ashamed to order dairy products in public in front of their peers, and 57% plan to give up dairy milk completely. Who is buying alternative milks? More than 40% are aged 35 or younger. According to the New York Times, Gen Z and young Millennials are stepping away from traditional dairy milk and consuming more plant-milk options, for both health and environmental reasons, purchasing 20% less dairy milk last year than the national average.

Gen Z is a generation of coffee house consumers; one third buy five or more foodservice beverages every week. Per the Project Café USA 2020 industry report published by Allegra Group’s World Coffee Portal, the coffee shop market in the US currently exceeds $45.8 billion and is anticipated to scale to more than $60 billion by the end of 2027.

Gen Z Values Sustainability – And Is Willing to Pay More For More Sustainable Products
Sustainability and climate awareness are top priorities for Gen Z and Millennials. More than 75% of Generation Z shoppers prefer to buy sustainable brands, and most are willing to spend 10% more on sustainable products, stating that sustainability is more important to them than brand names.

“We're exceptionally excited to distribute Hope and Sesame to our café clients,” said Suneal Pabari, Co-Founder & CEO of The Roasters Pack. “It’s an incredibly innovative product that is pushing forward on environmental sustainability - which is exactly the direction that specialty coffee should be heading. Not to mention the fact that it steams great, is healthy and of course, tastes so dang good.” The Roasters Pack Wholesale is a specialty coffee distribution subdivision of The Roasters Pack, the largest coffee subscription in Canada. The wholesale division distributes essential supplies to more than 50 cafés in Toronto, the Greater Toronto Area, and Southern Ontario.

Leading Influential Cafés are Sesamemilk’s Early Adopters
The Green Line Café, a five-door coffee chain in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, whose primary client base is Gen Z and Millennial consumers, has also added Hope and Sesame® Barista Blend Sesamemilk to its everyday selection of alt milks after sampling Barista Blend at New York Coffee Fest in March 2023.

The Green Line Café noted on its Instagram page that “In addition to pairing really well with espresso to make super tasty lattes, sesame milk is an incredibly sustainable and planet-friendly plant-based milk. Sesame is a hearty drought-tolerant, self-pollinating, naturally pest-resistant crop, AND Hope and Sesame uses upcycled seeds already used in sesame oil production to make their milks extra low waste!”

The Green Line Café Instagram launch post and sidewalk sign featured in The Philadelphia Inquirer, displays Hope and Sesame® Barista Blend Sesame Milk in April 2023.

Café Culture – and Sesamemilk Applications – Extend Far Beyond Coffee
Hope and Sesame® Barista Blend is also showing early signs of success with non-coffee based beverage cafes, such as JinJin Matcha, a new Matcha and Tea room located in Tacoma, Washington. Discovering that Sesamemilk and Matcha were the perfect pairing, JinJin Matcha added Hope and Sesame® Barista Blend to their permanent menu and noted that they’ve “been loving [the] milk!” As beverage innovation becomes more important to consumers and cafes alike, Hope and Sesame® is leading the charge by bringing forward new sesamemilk-based recipes developed by barista influencers and Planting Hope Michelin-Starred Chef Henry Hill.

Planting Hope Showcases Six Innovative Café Beverages at the 2023 Specialty Coffee Association Expo
Hope and Sesame® exhibited its full range of Sesamemilk flavors at the Specialty Coffee Association’s Specialty Coffee Expo in Portland, Oregon, April 20-23. As the café industry’s largest national trade show, the exhibition is a leading source of innovation and ideas for the café industry, from independents to major chains.

In addition to a hot espresso Sesamemilk latte, at this year’s Expo, Hope and Sesame® sampled six innovative beverages featuring Hope and Sesame® Barista Sesamemilk, including several non-coffee-based beverages.  The full menu was well-received by Expo’s audience of roasters, distributors, café chains, and independent cafés, who often stopped to sample one beverage and ended up staying to try them all:

“The response we received at the Specialty Coffee Expo was outstanding,” said Julia Stamberger, Co-Founder and CEO of The Planting Hope Company. “We were excited to showcase Sesamemilk in a wide variety of beverages, from matcha to refreshers, understanding that some of the fastest-growing segments of the café beverage industry are iced beverages and non-coffee beverages.”

Hope and Sesame® Barista Blend Black Sesame Nitro Latte being poured at the 2023 Specialty Coffee Expo

Hope and Sesame® Team Members discussing Barista Blend Sesamemilk with prospective customers at the 2023 Specialty Coffee Association Expo

To find Hope and Sesame® Barista Blend at a location near you, check out the Planting Hope Café and Store locator.

Conversion of Convertible Debenture
The Company has issued 90,909 Units (as defined herein) and proposes to issue 5,961 subordinate voting shares (each, a “Share)” upon conversion of a convertible debenture with a face value of $56,000 issued by the Company under its private placement completed on October 20, 2022 (see the Company’s news release dated October 21, 2022). The principal amount of the convertible debenture of $50,000 was converted into 90,909 units (“Units”) at a price of $0.55 per Unit. Each Unit is comprised of one Share and one non-transferable share purchase warrant (a “Warrant”). Each Warrant is exercisable by the holder thereof to purchase one Share at an exercise price of $0.80 at any time prior to October 20, 2025. Subject to the approval of the TSX Venture Exchange (“TSXV”), prepaid and accrued interest under the convertible debenture totaling $2,235.62 will be converted into 5,961 Shares at a price of $0.375 per Share in accordance with the terms of the convertible debenture.

In addition, the Company proposes to convert accrued and unpaid interest due up to and including December 31, 2022 on certain outstanding convertible debentures in the amount of $43,158 into 115,088 Shares at a price of $0.375 per Share in accordance with the terms of such convertible debenture.  The proposed conversion of interest and issuance of Shares thereunder remains subject to the approval of the TSXV.

About the Specialty Coffee Association Expo
The Specialty Coffee Expo, held annually by the Specialty Coffee Association (“SCA”), was designed to be the coffee professional's one stop shop for everything they need to succeed in the coffee industry. The Specialty Coffee Expo has everything for everyone in the coffee world. Roasters and retailers can attend and have the opportunity to exhibit their products on the show floor, network with the industry's decision makers, and further their professional careers by participating in the SCA's numerous lectures, and hands-on learning opportunities. Food and Beverage professionals can view the industry's most innovative and cutting edge coffee products, learn about integrating specialty coffee into their existing business plan, and easily make purchasing decisions face to face on the show floor. Coffee Enthusiasts of all professional backgrounds can participate in or watch the coffee competitions, mingle with like-minded attendees at receptions and lunches, or learn more about the art of cupping, brewing or roasting in our educational programs.

The SCA works all year to create an event that will be all-inclusive for every aspect of the coffee industry and benefit all coffee professionals and markets. If coffee is your business, your career path or your passion, the Specialty Coffee Expo is the only show you need to attend to reach your goals in the industry. Learn more about the Specialty Coffee Expo here.

About The Planting Hope Company Inc.
Planting Hope develops, launches, and scales uniquely innovative plant-based and planet-friendly food and beverage brands. Planting Hope's award-winning and cutting-edge products fill key unmet needs in the skyrocketing plant-based food and beverage space. The Planting Hope brand family includes Hope and Sesame® Sesamemilk, Barista Blend Sesamemilk, and Sesamilk™ creamers, RightRice® Veggie Rice, Mozaics™ Real Veggie Chips, and Veggicopia® Veggie Snacks. Planting Hope products are currently found in more than 15,000 retail doors and 70,000 total distribution points across North America. Founded by experienced food industry entrepreneurs, Planting Hope is a women-managed and women-led company focused on nutrition, sustainability, and representation. 

For more information about Planting Hope please visit plantinghopecompany.com, sign up for Planting Hope news emails HERE and follow on LinkedIn.

An informational webinar on The Planting Hope Company from CEO and Co-Founder Julia Stamberger recorded in January 2023 is available HERE.

To follow the brands on Instagram and Facebook, please visit: @hopeandsesameco, @rightrice, @mozaicschips, @veggicopia.

To find Planting Hope products at a store near you in the United States or Canada, please visit the store locator. Planting Hope products are also available at plantinghopebrands.com and ecommerce retailers including Amazon.com and Amazon.ca.


Company Contact:
Julia Stamberger
CEO and Co-Founder
(773) 492-2243

Investor Relations Contact:
Glen Akselrod, Bristol Capital
(905) 326-1888 ext. 1

Media Contact:
Alex Jessup, Jessup PR
(323) 529-3541

Neither the TSX Venture Exchange nor its Regulation Services Provider (as that term is defined in the policies of the TSX Venture Exchange) accepts responsibility for the adequacy or accuracy of this release.

Forward-Looking Statements
Certain disclosure in this release, including the potential issuance of Shares upon conversion of prepaid interest and accrued and unpaid interest (the “Interest Conversion”), constitutes forward-looking statements that are subject to numerous risks, uncertainties and other factors outside of the Company’s control that may cause future results to differ materially from those expressed or implied in such forward-looking statements. In preparing the forward-looking statements in this news release, the Company has applied several material assumptions, including, but not limited to, the assumption that all conditions precedent (including TSXV approval) to the Interest Conversion will be satisfied in a timely manner; that general economic and business conditions will not change in a materially adverse manner; and that the Company will be able to raise additional funds on reasonable terms. Although the management of the Company believes that the assumptions made and the expectations represented by such statements are reasonable, there can be no assurance that any forward-looking statement herein will prove to be accurate. Readers are cautioned not to place undue reliance on forward-looking statements. The Company expressly disclaims any intention or obligation to update or revise any forward-looking statements whether as a result of new information, future events or otherwise.

This news release contains "forward-looking statements" or "forward-looking information" (collectively referred to hereafter as "forward-looking statements") within the meaning of applicable Canadian securities legislation. All statements that address activities, events, or developments that the Company expects or anticipates will, or may, occur in the future, including statements about the Company's ability to execute on its goals, the timing pertaining to these goals the potential demand for the Companys products, the timing and success of anticipated product launches and distribution of the Companys products, and the Company's business prospects, future trends, plans and strategies. In some cases, forward looking statements are preceded by, followed by, or include words such as "may", "will," "would", "could", "should", "believes", "estimates", "projects", "potential", "expects", "plans", "anticipates", "continues", or the negative of those words or other similar or comparable words. In preparing the forward looking statements in this news release, the Company has applied several material assumptions, including, but not limited to, the assumption that demand for the Companys product will be sustained or increase in accordance with managements projections, that the Companys internal research and analysis is indicative of broader market trends and the Companys anticipated future demand for its products, that changes in consumer preferences in the plant-based food industry will continue in accordance with the Companys expectations, that the Companys current business objectives can be achieved and that its other corporate activities will proceed as expected, and that general business and economic conditions will not change in a materially adverse manner. Although the management of the Company believes that the assumptions made and the expectations represented by such statements are reasonable, there can be no assurance that any forward-looking statement herein will prove to be accurate. Forward-looking statements involve known and unknown risks, uncertainties, and other factors which may cause the actual results, performance, or achievements of the Company to be materially different from any future results, performance, or achievements expressed or implied by such forward-looking statements. Although management of the Company has attempted to identify important factors that could cause actual results to differ materially from those contained in forward-looking information, there may be other factors that cause results not to be as anticipated, estimated, or intended. Risks and uncertainties applicable to the Company, as well as trends identified by the Company affecting its industry can be found in the Companys annual information form and the Company's continuous disclosure record available on SEDAR at www.sedar.com. Such cautionary statements qualify all forward-looking statements made in this news release. The Company undertakes no obligation to update or revise any forward-looking statements, whether as a result of new information, future events, or otherwise, except as required by applicable law.


General Contact

  • US Address

    4710 N. Sheridan Road
    Chicago IL
    60640 USA
  • Canadian Address

    c/o Bentall 5
    550 Burrard Street, Suite 1008
    Vancouver, British Columbia, V6C 2B5