Alt Protein Focus: Lab-grown meat naming, ANEW plant-based luncheon meat, Nestle Malaysia plant-based progress and more feature in our round-up
Name of the game: Can there be a consensus on how to name meat products grown in a lab?
Cell-based meat? Cultivated meat? Differing views have been put forward by the FAO, WHO and industry players in APAC in defining the product, even though everyone seems to acknowledge that a common language is key for consumer education.
The FAO and WHO preferred to use “cell-based food” term in its recent report into the category.
It claimed that a literature review conducted elicited that the “cell-based food” term was “less confusing, conveniently overarching and generally well-accepted by consumers”, and accurately reflects the science of the product.
Changing perceptions: Singapore’s ANEW woos health-conscious consumers with ‘nutritious’ plant-based luncheon meat
Singapore-based ANEW says it is tapping into parent company’s years of experience in food manufacturing to carve out a niche in the plant-based space with its ‘low-calorie, high-protein’ luncheon meat and RTE sauces.
Launched by Singapore food manufacturing group OTS Holdings Limited, ANEW is part of the company’s efforts to stay on top of global market trends.
“For the past 25 years, OTS has been using animal protein. We noticed an increasing focus on wellness and sustainability topics worldwide, and in 2019, we decided to diversify our products with plant protein. Apart from reducing reliance on animal sources, we also wanted to stretch our innovation limits to create shelf-stable plant-based products,” Ong Shiya, manager of brand and corporate marketing at OTS, told FoodNavigator-Asia.
Sustainability amid volatility: Nestle Malaysia pushes energy, packaging and plant-based progress despite economic uncertainty
Nestle Malaysia has vowed to continue its progress in environmental and business sustainability areas such as renewable energy, recyclable packaging and plant-based product innovation even amidst current global economic instability.
Nestle celebrated its 110th anniversary in Malaysia in 2022 as its global headquarters announced positive growth in the company’s overall organic sales and profits, as well as significant progress in its ESG initiatives.
“Nestle’s peak carbon [emissions status] has been behind us since the 2019-2020 period, but as of 2022 we are also below the 2018 starting levels greenhouse gas emissions, an important achievement,” Nestle CEO Mark Schneider said when presenting on the firm’s ESG progress.
Plant-based and clean label: China’s Haofood targets the increasingly label-sensitive consumer with latest NPD
Chinese firm Haofood says that the convergence of right ingredients with its proprietary tech was key to creating its first clean-label plant-based product - Carefree Pulled Chickless.
It is available via its official WeChat store and direct-to-retail via restaurants serving plant-based foods in China.
Its founder and CEO, Astrid Prajogo, told FoodNavigator-Asia what went behind creating its first clean-label product:
“To achieve a clean label product, it starts upstream from the sourcing and that means no added artificial ingredients. As it’s a plant-based product, we know we’d need certain ingredients so that’s hard work on its own. Processing is also very important to make it clean-label as one of our biggest challenges is making the texture and flavour mimic real meat. The product is very sensitive to pressure and temperature.”
Stock options: Vitality Foods drills down on meaty flavour ‘translation’ to address plant-based gaps
Singapore-based Vitality Foods has developed a range of plant-based stocks to address current flavour-related challenges in the alternative meat industry.
Vitality Foods initially started off with the development of plant-based stock powders to provide healthy nutritional alternatives to elderly consumers, but soon found they could also be used to solve issues faced by the plant-based meat sector.
According to the firm’s Co-Founder and Chef Sowmiya Venkatesan, although plant-based meat alternatives today have grown exponentially over the past few years,, when it comes to getting the flavour right it may be necessary to go back to the basics.
“More often than not, plant-based meat analogue companies are focusing their efforts on getting the texture of their products right in order to mimic meat but when it comes to the flavour aspects they go to major flavour houses and just get something from their libraries to use and then that is their product,” she told FoodNavigator-Asia.