IFF launches breakthrough innovation in whole-muscle pieces of plant protein meat alternatives
Late last week, IFF announced the global launch of its next generation plant-based protein – SUPRO TEX – to accelerate growth in the meat alternative category beyond ground meat burgers. This new solution unlocks the door for rapid innovation in the meat alternative space because of its unique texture and versatility.
SUPRO TEX provides a very similar texture to chunky pieces of whole muscle animal protein in an easy-to-use format that does not require major capital investment for manufacturers to begin production. Made in irregularly shaped, the new 80% protein SUPRO TEX is based on soy protein, a complete, high-quality protein, comparable in quality to animal protein. As a dry product, it eliminates the need for a cold supply chain, simplifying and reducing shipping costs and storage.
"What makes SUPRO TEX stand out in the plant-based space is – for the first time – meat alternative manufacturers can make tender, plant-based protein, whole muscle pieces or chunks without the need for major capital investments or a refrigerated supply chain," explained Michel Mellema, Global Innovation Director of IFF's RE-IMAGINE PROTEIN program. "This is the latest from IFF's RE-IMAGINE PROTEIN program, where we accelerate the development of breakthrough ingredients and technologies to meet the needs of our customers and consumers. By combining science and creativity, we're developing an end-to-end portfolio of plant-based solutions that pushes past traditional boundaries to change the way peotechple eat."
By 2035, market researchers predict that one in 10 portions of protein is likely to be plant-based. Today, consumers of plant-based meat alternatives are primarily motivated by their health and wellbeing, yet sustainability and ethical concerns are becoming increasingly important to them. Because more than 40% of global consumers are highly interested in meat alternatives with the same taste and texture as animal-origin meat, SUPRO TEX was designed specifically to deliver a similar meat-eating experience that consumers crave.
"This is a paradigm shift," added Mellema. "We are expanding our offerings to more meat alternative players. Today, we have solutions and technical knowledge to support customers who use High Moisture Extrusion technology (HME), which is an excellent technology, but not necessarily suitable for all meat alternative players. That´s why we developed SUPRO TEX – a single, easy-to-use product that can deliver similar texture to what HME products provide, but without major capital investments."
SUPRO TEX offers endless product design and formulation opportunities with its high-process tolerance, neutral flavor, and color. Manufacturers can easily reproduce pieces of differently textured meats just by adjusting hydration levels and custom flavor systems – imagine a tender beef bourguignon, chicken stir fry or pork fajitas – but all 100% plant-based.
"In a patent-pending process, soy protein is combined with other texturants to improve the firmness of the protein pieces after hydration," stated Ulrik Madsen, Culinary Designer, IFF. "Due to their unique composition, SUPRO TEX chunks retain their texture throughout manufacturing – without breaking apart when in a tumbler or simmering – as compared to typical low-moisture extruded products."
Flavors and colors are added during the product hydration process, so they become evenly distributed and better absorbed among pieces. SUPRO TEX pieces are gluten free and require no animal products, such as eggs, to be added to the end products to achieve optimal performance.
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