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Packaged Food Plant-Based Products Science What's New

Current Foods Just Set A Guinness World Record with Plant-Based Ceviche

Photo: Current Foods

Current Foods has been making major waves with their wildly innovative take on plant-based seafood. Using science, along with boundless imagination, the new company has created products with the taste, texture, and appearance of actual seafood. Besides great flavors, their products are packed with nutrition that includes omega-3, iron, and vitamin B-12.

Choosing to not go with the flow, Current Foods is charting territory previously avoided by other brands that offer plant-based seafood. The best part is the ingredients, which are simple and easy to pronounce. For texture, they use bamboo and potato. Radish and tomato provide the color, while protein comes from algae and peas. 

Photo: Current Foods

For people with plant-based lifestyles or those interested in including more greens into their diets, this is the sunken treasure we’ve been waiting for. Their initial offerings include Current Tuna, which is available in four flavors: Original, Roasted Sesame, Yuzu Chipotle, and Ginger Tamarind. The second offering is their Current Salmon and comes in Smoked Black Pepper and Original Smoked. 

After a soft-launch last year, Current Foods is preparing to flood the US market. They were just awarded the Guinness World Records title for alternative seafood, a notable achievement.

To secure the title, they crafted a massive, record-setting 589 pounds of plant-based ceviche using their signature Current Tuna. Following the achievement, the ceviche was distributed to food programs around the Bay Area. Jacek Prus, CEO and co-founder of Current Foods expresses the significance of the recognition:

“Having Current Foods be forever part of GUINNESS WORLD RECORDS is representative of our company goal to blend the inventive with the familiar and reimagine the way we eat. GUINNESS WORLD RECORDS is a storied institution. Seafood is a diet staple. Seafood made from plants however, is what we hope to make a new classic. And, we want to do this in a big way. Literally and figuratively.”

Prus founded the company in 2019 along with food technologist and Chief Science Officer, Sònia Hurtado.

Photo: Current Foods

Current Foods’ products are not only made for vegans, but for all diet lifestyles. They provide the benefits of actual seafood without the mercury or micro-plastics. Pre-order for their Original Tuna Cubes and Original Tuna Filet is now available. You can use the promo code: nextfrontier to get 4 packs for the price of 3.

Expect a wider release this year as they roll out nationwide to restaurants, retail, and e-commerce. Fans can follow their journey here, I’ve no doubt they’ll be making even bigger splashes in the future.

Plant-based seafood is here to stay and growing, making for an exciting time in food innovation.

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Health News Technology What's New

UC Berkeley is Giving $10K to Students That Develop Novel Plant-Based Meats and Seafood

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Photo: Abby Dernburg

Whether you’re a fan of it or appalled by the idea, it’s become clear that plant-based meats are one of the key food trends for 2017 and for years to come. Highly innovative food tech companies have created plenty of plant-based meat products that are now beginning to mimic their real counterparts, like Impossible Foods’ plant-based bleeding burger, or New Wave Foods’ revolutionary vegan shrimp.

As the industry moves to developing new plant-based meats, they’re turning to a new, interested, and growing source of talent to make it possible: college students. Specifically, UC Berkeley students.

The Good Food Institute, a major advocate of plant-based and alternative meat products for the betterment of the world, has teamed up with UC Berkeley’s Sutardja Center for Entrepreneurship and Technology (SCET) to develop a Challenge Lab course and a competition centered around the development of plant-based proteins.

The Challenge Lab course is entitled “Innovative and Sustainable Plant-Based Protein: How to Produce More and Better Plant-based Meat,” and lasts all semester. It’s designed for teams of students of any educational background to create the next wave of plant-based foods in a delicious, affordable, and sustainable capacity.

Third-year nutrition student Hailey Zhou, who is in the course, told Foodbeast that teams in class aim to “develop a product (line) and a business model to accelerate the growth and innovation of this market segment, and hopefully create some impactful product to consumer choices taking a different look at plant protein sourcing and the production process.”

Throughout the semester, the class meets in four hours of lecture and eight hours of group work each week to develop their plant-based concepts, leading up to a massive pitch competition in front of plant-based meat experts with a $5,000 cash prize.

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Photo: VegNews

Additionally, a special competition course dedicated to the development of new plant-based seafood products will also be run by the same team of the Good Food Institute and SCET will begin March 10th. This “Innovation Collider” course specifically focuses on using proteins beyond pea or soy protein to develop new plant-based seafoods, and can be taken for a couple of semester credits.  Undergrad and graduate students are invited to apply to compete by March 1st, and are also eligible for another $5,000 cash prize.

Students in the course and competition are both educated on current meat analogs in the industry, but challenged to use innovative protein sources and raw materials that aren’t heavily used to develop the latest plant-based meats and seafood. Zhou’s team, for example, is exploring the potential of underused plant like microalgae, kelp, or ancient grains such as millet to develop their products. Zhou made it clear though that plant proteins weren’t the only source for their innovation:

“Not only can we contribute to a more balanced agriculture and cultivation through sourcing, we can also look into upcycling food/ag waste or by products, and look at processes from fermentation to extrusion to explore potential to unlock nutrients and revive the discarded food.”

These ideas and many more will be necessary to develop the solutions expected out of these courses, but the students are up to the challenge. They want to not just create the next plant-based burger, but have an idea on how to create everything from vegan “scallops” to vegan “chicken.”

It will definitely be interesting to see what amazing plant-based products come out of these Berkeley courses — and who comes away with the cash prizes.

Those prizewinners could be the next big CEOs or trendsetters in the future of plant-based meat — and of sustainable food.