Categories
Food Tech

THE PLANT BASED MEAT MAGIC

Written by Suhail Jindran for Digilah (Tech Thought Leadership)

The rapid increase in meat consumption shed light on the resource demand of meat production. Cattle are responsible for about 6.52% of total anthropogenic greenhouse gas emissions (3.19 Gigatons of carbon dioxide equivalents) and the production of 1 kg of beef causes 26.5 kg CO2 emission and needs 15,000 litres of water (equal to 50 days’ household water use per capita in EU). Many researchers suggest that meat consumption need to be decreased to protect and preserve the environmental resources.

So, let’s go behind the scenes to find out how the Plant-Based Meat Magic is done… Meat analogues are based on plant-based proteins and come in various shapes and sizes. But what does the production process look like? And what is the difference between Texturized Vegetable Proteins (TVP) and High Moisture Meat Analogues (HMMA)? Get a glimpse behind the scenes in the following infographic:

Even though meat substitutes are available in numerous forms and consistencies, they are mostly based on two types of plant-based proteins: Texturized Vegetable Proteins (TVP) and High Moisture Meat Analogues (HMMA).

TVP is known for its dry consistency and long shelf life when stored under normal ambient conditions. It is mostly offered as crumbles, flakes or even strips. As a result, it is suitable for several dishes ranging from the classic spaghetti Bolognese to vegan chicken breast. When preparing TVP-based products, they need to be soaked in water or liquid as TVP requires dehydration before use.

HMMA on the other hand is characterized by its high proportion of moisture. It typically consists of 50-80% of water which is about the same as lean meat. Therefore, it is used for many ready-to-eat meat dishes.

Shandi Global was born out of years in the research and development to fulfil the gap found in the plant-based meat market. The target market for plant-based meat includes vegetarians, vegans, non-vegetarians who are seeking to reduce their meat consumption. Shandi Global does not believe in changing human behaviour towards their diet, but instead offer a huge choice by providing a 100% plant-based meat which does not contain any artificial ingredients.

The founders Dr. Reena and her husband Dr. Gaurav both spend over a decade in the food tech and science industry and noticed that the emergence of Plant Based Meat had several flaws and missing elements with a limitation to what the end consumer could prepare as most companies were offering only mince products or burgers and sausages while some were offering soy products with lots of sodium, artificial flavours and additives. This made the couple to think and utilise their combined years of expertise in the food science industry to start deep research to identify the missing links through latest technology and discover each molecule found in meat and in pea protein to match 100% the meat analogue in texture, flavour and appearance.

They developed a complete amino acid profile: Each protein is different due to its precise composition of amino acids. Each amino acid has a very specific function in our body. Hence having high number of proteins is not enough to build muscles and repair body tissues. Right protein with right balance of amino acids is a must to be called as nutrition.

At Shandi, meat does not only contain high protein, but also right proteins with 90% of amino acids in same composition as meat. It has high digestibility like meat and dairy so that nutrients are quickly absorbed.

Today the company is the first in Singapore to have the latest state-of-the-art technology with a patented and custom-built extruder machine that is capable of producing whole slabs of meat like steaks, breast meat or our signature Chicken Drumsticks ™. Our technology differentiates us from the others, as a majority of producers are only “Texturized Vegetable Proteins” (TVP) while we are a step ahead of adapting both TVP and “High Moisture Meat Analogues” (HMMA). The difference in both methods is; TVP is released and directly cut at the nozzle plate, HMMA requires a special cooling die. In the cooling die the material is cooled down while being forced into a laminar flow. This way, a meat-like structure is created, and our custom-built machine does what we have designed it for.

To sum up, plant based meat analogue (i.e., plant-based meat alternatives or substitutes, or vegan meats) are becoming more and more popular. The consumption is also increasing while the primary role of meat analogues is to replace the meat component in meals where the appropriate nutrient content and hedonic value will be provided as well. Using micro biotechnology, it is possible to reverse engineer naturally found molecules in various legumes into a full-bodied muscle meat which looks, feels and cuts exactly like any meat product.

4 replies on “THE PLANT BASED MEAT MAGIC”

I would like to know (1)?what are the ingredients of the product? and (2) whether each ingredient meets the food safety regulations set by the WHO, the Food safety departments of the 144 countries? (3) What is the concentration of ttrans fats once the good is ready to be consumed? (4) what are the concentrations of Acrylamides, triglycerides, all the oxidants and inflammatory compounds in the food prior to being consumed (before & after the water, heat, & air are available?

Leave a Reply