Hundreds of kilograms of imperfect Western Australian avocados will be converted to a dairy-free ice-cream and sold in Perth retail outlets and restaurants, starting next week.
The new business, Gelavo, has been launched by food technologists and business partners Andrew Tilley and Anthea Rodoreda, who developed the idea three years ago as part of their food science studies at Curtin University.
Although nothing happened initially -mainly because a tight supply of avocados meant very little waste- the pair dusted off the idea a year ago and developed it into a new business under Curtin Accelerate, a 10-week program providing support and guidance to commercialise a business idea.
Ms Rodoreda said rapid growth in WA avocado production in recent years had increased waste volumes to the point where they could source enough to launch their business.
Mr Tilley said the ice-cream, to be made in their new Osborne Park facilities, would use south-west growers-supplied good quality Hass avocados that were considered second grade for aesthetic reasons such as blemishes on the skin or size or shape.
Ms Rodoreda estimates Gelavo will use about one tonne of these less attractive avocados in the first year, but volumes are expected to multiply in future: “We aim to reduce that waste, while providing a good value-added vegan product to the dairy-free segment and to those with allergies or intolerances.”
According to thewest.com.au, the ice-cream mixture contains about 22-25 per cent avocado, depending on the flavour, along with water, sugar (16 per cent), canola oil, and lime juice to stop the fruit browning.