MEETING CONSUMER DEMAND FOR NUTRITIOUS, SUSTAINABLE AND ETHICAL FOOD
Feeding a growing population, responsibly
A growing middle class combined with a world population that is expected to reach 10 billion by 2050 will increase global demand for nutrition dramatically, particularly meat and other protein-rich foods. However, science tells us we cannot expand existing agricultural production capacities without severe environmental and societal consequences.
In parallel, food preferences are changing quickly among consumers, many of whom are looking to follow a healthier, low-impact diet that places more attention on animal welfare.
New Food is colorful, diverse and dynamic
Close up color image depicting a mid adult man in his 30s holding a freshly prepared vegan burger – loaded with salad and sauce, and sandwiched inside a brightly-colored bun – which he is about to eat. Selective focus on the burger and the man’s hands in the foreground, while the man’s smiling face is defocused in the background.
New Food embraces the basic principle and goal of feeding more people using fewer resources. As a category, the primary focus is protein rich foods and components and other nutritious compounds, produced through traditional processing methods, precision fermentation or tissue engineering, or a combination of these methods:
- Plant-based: plant-based foods, plant-based beverages, plant-based components
- Mycelium-based: fungi-based foods and ingredients
- Precision fermentation: proteins (e.g., enzymes), sweeteners, fats, microbes (e.g., yeast, bacteria and microalgae), algae-based foods and ingredients
- Cell culture: cultivated meat, cultivated seafood, cell-based milk
- Novel foods: insect-based foods and ingredients, crustacean-based ingredients (e.g. krill)
The development of hybrid products, like those that combine soy heme produced via precision fermentation with plant-based foods, means there are numerous product possibilities. Combining components and ingredients also contributes to healthier and tastier foods which are important factors for establishing customer loyalty.
GEA – enabler of the New Food industry
GEA supports start-ups, ingredient suppliers and food processors to develop, scale-up and produce the nutritious new foods consumers are looking for.
Our customers in the alternative-protein space benefit from GEA’s deep food and beverage expertise, as well as our brewery and pharma know-how, which is particularly relevant in the demanding and rapidly expanding area of precision fermentation.
GEA test centers enable customers to test processes, machines, ingredients and recipes with support from our experienced food scientists and technicians. These sessions – which can include machine training – are available on-site or conducted remotely and are important for getting high quality products to market more quickly.
Closing the loop in production
Producing more sustainable food requires an examination of the production processes themselves, which often require large amounts of energy and water. Thanks to our holistic engineering know-how and integrated heating & refrigeration solutions, customers can significantly lower their energy usage and carbon emissions. Likewise, we can help customers minimize their freshwater withdrawals and reuse process water.
Whether your project is greenfield or an upgrade, it is important to involve GEA engineers early in the process to ensure you are taking advantage of every possible lever to increase the efficiency of your process or plant and thereby reduce operating costs. Not sure where to start? Just contact us, as we are happy to support you throughout the entire process.