Technologies for meat texture alternatives They have evolved in many ways to meet the highly sophisticated demands of consumers. With the rapid diversification of alternative protein products, there is a great demand for technologies. Which helps bring meat analogues closer to authentic imitation of the muscle structure of a wider range of animal species.
There is a significant interdisciplinary exchange of technologies between, for example, polymer processing and food processing. Such as extrusion or bioprocessing, and ingredient processing, such as biofermentation or cultured meat processing.
According to experts, previously laboratory-based technologies are now being developed to become commercially viable, enabling scale-up. Today, the latest technologies explore more of a top-down approach, such as shear cell or extrusion.
There are also newer companies exploring the scalability of bottom-up approaches. Like spinning to produce protein fibers, to create meat structure.
How to texture alternatives to fish meat
The difficulty in the future will be creation textured vegetable proteins to substitute for white fish. This is because the protein concentrates used in them have a beige to brown hue and do not produce the bright white color found in fish alternatives.
In order to achieve satisfactory results for the replacement of white fish, vegetable protein producers and extruder companies must work closely together.
Earlier this year, Planteneers developed a range of plant-based textured plant proteins and binders, called fiildTex and fiildFish. Aiming to help producers catch the no-catch seafood wave with vegan alternatives for sushi, salmon and tuna.
Three main processes for texturing meat substitutes
The first is a process in which the globular proteins present in plants are developed and coordinated into a fibrous structure using the input of thermomechanical energy. By far the most common way to do this on a significant scale is extrusion technology. Where twin screws are used as the primary mixing and cutting mechanism required to achieve this goal.
Another method is the fermentation of microorganisms to obtain proteins for texture. But perhaps the newest method of texturing is that used to create cell-based flesh. Where animal stem cells are differentiated, usually on a scaffold material, and propagated in a bioreactor.
A third process is electrospinning, which transforms a multitude of different synthetic or organic compounds into a structural substitute for the non-muscle, lean (extracellular) proteins in all types of cell-based meats.
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