Mikuna was founded with a mission to change the future of food — not just for a few people, but for everyone. Feeding a growing population of 10 billion people by 2050 will require bold new solutions. We believe the superior nutritional, health, application, and environmental benefits of Chocho will fundamentally change the food industry and unlock new innovation to feed a growing population while having a positive and lasting impact on the planet.
Purpose is the heart of everything we do, and we are on a journey to constantly improve. From packaging materials to ingredients, our goal is to leave a positive impact on the planet and on the Andean farming communities we care so deeply about.
As Mikuna has evolved as a brand, we’ve made exciting changes along the way. Last year we changed our packaging approach by moving away from canisters made from plastic, metal and cardboard to PCR-based packaging (made from Post-Consumer Recycled material like milk jugs), while also removing the single-use plastic scoop to cut down on weight and plastic waste.
Now, it’s time for another big change, but this time, it’s to our visual brand identity, starting with our single-serve packs. It’s the same powerful superfood protein, and the same delicious taste, but with a completely new look and feel that aligns the brand identity with our Andean roots, and makes it easier for our customers to identify our delicious flavors and find our brand quickly on shelves.
For this packaging refresh, we wanted to create something as special and unique as Chocho, the incredible plant and main ingredient in all Mikuna products. Chocho is grown at a high altitude in the Andean Mountains in South America, and we wanted to honor the geography of the region and the plant that naturally thrives there on rainwater alone. Our new brand design is inspired by the stories from our founder Ricky Echanique about his homeland — the Andean Highlands in Ecuador.
This packaging is the first expression of our new visual identity as we expand the number of stores that carry one the world's most unique and purest forms of plant protein on-shelf.
We have chosen three distinctive colors to allow our customers to easily identify each of our three flavors. We’ve also created a simple visual hierarchy that quickly communicates premium nutritional information quickly and effectively.
Along with highlighting the purity of our ingredients, our new packaging features a circle motif inspired by the regenerative cycle Chocho creates by fixing nitrogen deep into the soil, enriching the land and making it more fertile for future crops.
Our new primary typeface, Recoleta, is also a nod to our South American heritage and was designed by the talented font designers at Latinworks, a Hispanic type studio that understands the power that culture has on brand identity.
To round out our design system we chose to feature images from the Andes Mountains in Ecuador that help illustrate the beautiful and unique part of the world where Chocho grows. We have selected three images shot by Ricky — one for each of our three flavors — that celebrate this powerful plant and stunning Andean landscape. Each of these images each has story to tell:
Our Pure Chocho flavor has just one ingredient.
The Indigenous Andean farmers call it Chocho. Botanists call it ‘lupinus mutabilis’. We knew we wanted to highlight an image of this powerful plant growing in its natural habitat as the sole ingredient in Pure Chocho.
Naturally irrigated by rainwater alone, Chocho grows only at high altitude in what we call “The Chocho Zone,” between 10,000 and 14,000 feet in steep, hilly terrain where most crops struggle to gain a foothold. This resilient plant thrives in these harsh conditions and even enhances the soil where it grows.
This photo was taken by our founder, Ricky. “This photo of a single flowering plant was taken on the edge of a Chocho field located between the towns of Sigchos and Chugchilan within the province of Cotopaxi in Ecuador at an Altitude of approximately 10,500 feet. The Chocho plant has bright purple flowers that bloom between March and July depending on local conditions and climate.”
Our Vanilla flavor has always been a favorite of anyone new to our protein powders. It has a familiar flavor profile that is natural and not too sweet. We chose to use this drone image, taken by Ricky, that shows a wider view of the gorgeous hills where Chocho grows.
“This is the valley of Toachi that is located close to the town of Toacazo,” said Ricky.
“This aerial drone shot shows the area where most of the native Chocho grows, and where I first discovered the growing fields of the plants that my family told me about. You can see the steep and hilly terrain and make out parts of the cloud forests that butt up against the cultivated fields of Chocho.
It usually rains for a substantial part of the year but this day was quite clear and we luckily could see for miles. In the background is the 'Cerro Azul' and on the right of the picture is the end of the Illinizas mountain range.”
Cacao is a favorite of the Mikuna design team, and we lobbied hard to include this moody aerial shot taken at dusk from Ricky’s archives. With just five natural ingredients, the simplicity of the image matches the flavor profile of the cacao, and perfectly complements the chocolate-inspired color treatment.
As we expand this visual identity into our larger sizes, we will also feature a new stripe pattern inspired by the vibrant colors in the local textile weaving, native to the Andes Mountains.
Our single-serve packs are just the first step in a completely new brand identity for Mikuna. In the months to come, we’re excited to incorporate these meaningful elements into every aspect of the brand, from our website and marketing materials to our larger packaging and even future products that have yet to be released.
We’re proud to share this work with you, and we look forward to finding new ways to share Chocho with the world.