“Nanka’s mission is to provide Malaysian customers with unique, delicious plant-based meat products at a reasonable price, benefiting both people’s tastebuds and the environment. We are thrilled that the Lever Foundation has decided to support our project to develop domestic plant-based meat delicacies in Malaysia.”
-Ahmad Syafik Jaafar, co-founder of Nanka


What’s the one thing the alternative protein brand, Nanka, has in common with the world’s leading fast-food chains? They’re all about flavorful food at the most accessible price possible.

Don’t take our word for it, ask Nanka’s Chief Tasting Officer. She’s a picky eater, fast food lover, and daughter to Nanka’s co-founders. She’s the reason Nanka was created in the first place.

F&B veteran Ahmad Syafik Jaafar and food technologist Amirah Mohd Noh are the husband and wife duo behind Malaysia’s new, innovative alternative protein brand and the most recent addition to Lever’s portfolio of alternative protein startups. They were driven by the need to help their daughter and all Malaysians kick their fast food habit for a healthier alternative for good.

Beyond the incredible purpose and passion from the founding team, there’s another reason Nanka is set to impact the sector in a major way.

The key ingredient in Nanka’s products is jackfruit, known as nangka in Malaysia. Not only is jackfruit native to Malaysia, but it also grows in abundance all year round and survives pests, diseases, and high temperatures. Everything farmers need in food production when dealing with climate change-induced challenges.

Beyond ticking every environmental checkbox, jackfruit is also a nutritious, high-protein ingredient that adds a fibrous meat-like texture to plant-based meat.

Nanka’s very first product was their signature jackfruit-based burger patties. Since then, they have developed a variety of additional meat alternatives, including nuggets, balls, hotdogs, and minced meat. A fun fact: Nanka was actually the very first venture to catch Lever’s eye in Southeast Asia. In addition to an innovative and tasty product, the Nanka team came with a strong roadmap for their startup and a floodlight of innovative ideas for using their formula.

A recent study by the Department of Agribusiness at Universiti Putra Malaysia (UPM) found that 86% of Malaysian consumers aim to purchase more “green foods—more sustainable, safe, healthy and humane food products. With the recent wave of plant-forward and plant-based consumption habits in Malaysia, there is a strong demand for not just plant-based products—but affordable plant-based products. Nanka’s near future is looking bright—not just in Malaysia, but within the Southeast Asian region too, where the market for plant-based meat is expecting a 19% compound annual growth rate over the next five years.

This work happened because of the support of people like you. Please consider donating today to build a more humane and sustainable protein supply in Asia.