How Rubies in the Rubble made their famous vegan mayos

No matter how busy they were, Rubies in the Rubies demonstrated the importance in always investing in product.


Better for the world condiments

Rubies in the Rubble was at the time a Stage 2 sustainable condiments brand with listings in grocery outlets like Waitrose, and a huge number of foodservice sites. Founded by Jenny Costa, the team of 10 people were on a mission to make better-for-the-world sauces that tasted as good as the nation’s favourites.

How Rubies in the Rubble made their famous vegan mayos 1

A busy team with no time to improve the product

As with many high growth brands, the Rubies team were incredibly busy managing and growing their sales across various retailers, and making the known improvements to the products simply never reached the top of the to-do list. In particular, they needed to spend real time on their plant-based mayo – they wanted to find a specialist who could help them stabilise the product and develop the recipe to improve its overall flavour. They also wanted to extend their range by creating a new chilli mayo.

Finding this specialist kept dropping to the bottom of the to-do list even though the project was really important to their annual plan.


Parachuting in a trusted consultant

The Rubies team reached out to us to gain advice around hiring this consultant and to ask if we knew anyone that they could trust. With 4 years working with high growth brands, they were confident that if we could not deliver the project ourselves, we would know someone that could help them.

Within days we had set them up with a trusted NPD Consultant who started with a full root-cause analysis on the flavouring and stability issues with the product. This included a manufacturing site visit to identify any flaws in the process and treatment of ingredients.

Rubies wanted to have clean-label ingredients only. The Consultant researched novel solutions to deliver stability to a fats-based product while also leaving a clean label – after a lot of testing, they found a solution.

They then focused on the recipe development of the plant-based mayo and the new chilli mayo SKU. They tested over 100 versions of the mayos and soon landed on two fantastic recipes that Rubies would be proud to add to their range. All that was left was to take the recipe to the co-packer to make sure it could be scaled – the consultant managed that process of scale-up too.

How Rubies in the Rubble made their famous vegan mayos 2

Blind taste tests outperforming the nation’s favourites

Rubies in the Rubble are now selling their new Plant-Based Mayo and Chilli Mayo in major retailers, including Sainsbury’s and Ocado. The new recipes have been incredibly popular with consumers and have become some of the leading plant-based mayos on the market. Their continued investment in product has allowed the brand to grow and grow.


⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐ We were looking for a partner to help develop a range of vegan mayos. Through Young Foodies we found an NPD Consultant - a scientist turned food developer - passionate about delivering great flavour, and understanding scientifically why certain formulations might or might not work. They were a gem to work with, and smashed the brief, delivering flavour that had our products winning blind tasting vs the nations favourites."

This is a funny case study because we did not actually run the project in-house - instead our role here was to save the brand significant time and reduce the risk of finding a new unknown provider - especially when handling their product.

We have so much experience working with providers for everything a brand needs on their journey from start-up to £30m+ turnover. We have seen the good, the bad and the ugly and are so happy to make recommendations to save brands the risk. This Rubies case study is just one example of us having done that and we are so pleased to have seen the results for the team over there.”

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