Winner of the 2016 Ambassador’s Entrepreneurial Challenge: Team Moo Free

AEC 2016 winners Kukka Walden and Ella Martikainen with the panelists: serial entrepreneur Maija Itkonen, (Powermat/Green and gold foods;) Kauppalehti editor-in-chief Arno Ahosniemi; TV personality Marco Bjurström; Ambassador Adams; and marketing maven Nermin Hairedin of Dentsu Aegis.

U.S. Embassy Finland is pleased to announce the winners of the 2016 Ambassador’s Entrepreneurial Challenge – Team Moo Free (in Finnish: Ei Muuta)! These two young ladies, Ella Martikainen (15) and Kukka Walden (15), who recently became vegans, noticed to their annoyance that there are no vegan ice cream substitute products here in Finland that actually taste good, or that come in a variety of flavors beyond just strawberry and chocolate. Also, they had a quarrel with the idea that everything vegan must be a “health food.”

They decided to take matters into their own hands and create their own premium vegan ice cream, using hemp milk, a product that is, according to the girls, creamier and yummier than almond or soya milks.  

They created their ice creams in a variety of the flavors of Finland, ranging from blueberry to forest berry, brownie to gingerbread.  They tested out their recipes on willing guinea pigs, their school mates, and they were very successful!

They also dazzled our AEC panelists with their amazing pitch skills. (The panelists were five members: Ambassador Adams, star inventor/serial entrepreneur Maija Itkonen, (Powermat / Green and gold foods), marketing maven Nermin Hairedin of Dentsu Aegis, TV personality and dance company leader Marco Bjurstrom, and Kauppalehti editor-in-chief Arno Ahosniemi.)

More images available at the U.S. Embassy Flickr album. More information about the Ambassador’s Entrepreneurial Challenge.