Lukas Frei

Lukas Frei © Bühler


Bühler: “We Work Together to Create Solutions for Customers That Otherwise Wouldn’t Have Been Possible”

Bühler Group is a prominent Swiss company known for its advanced technology solutions for food processing and manufacturing. Founded in 1860 by Adolf Bühler in Uzwil, Switzerland, the company has grown to become a global leader in providing technologies for processing grains, rice, pasta, chocolate, and other foods. With its global presence, Bühler operates research and development centers and manufacturing sites around the world, serving customers in over 140 countries. We spoke with Lukas Frei who leads the market segment Alternative Proteins and Food Ingredients at Bühler. He is based at the headquarters in Uzwil, Switzerland. In what ways is Bühler innovating in the field of meat alternative processing technology? One of the main challenges in the industry has been the texture of the products. …


Integra Foods, the new ingredients division of Australian Grain Export (AGE), has opened a faba bean protein facility in Dublin, South Australia.

© Integra Foods

Integra Foods Breaks New Ground with Faba Bean Protein Facility in South Australia

Integra Foods, the new ingredients division of Australian Grain Export (AGE), has opened a faba bean protein facility in Dublin, South Australia. The facility, part of AGE’s $20 million vertically integrated value-adding precinct in South Australia’s Mid-North region, leverages sustainable and energy-efficient protein separation techniques. The new plant, described as a state-of-the-art facility, is set to produce 15,000 metric tons of “all-natural” and sustainable concentrates annually for innovative faba bean-based products. Mr. Tim Martin, managing director of Integra Foods, shared: “We’re proud to lead in developing Australia’s plant protein industry and launching South Australia’s newest industry.” Dry fractionation tech Unlike wet fractionating methods, the ingredients company uses pioneering dry fractionation, which does not require water, acids, alkalis, solvents, or drying to separate proteins and starches. …


The PTC team carrying out tests

The PTC team carrying out tests © GEA Westfalia Separator Group GmbH

Test Before You Invest: Find the Perfect Solution for Your New Food Product

With the underlying economic conditions in many countries and regions not exactly optimal at the moment, it is all the more essential to plan and protect production-related growth projects in a professional manner. Whether creating and perfecting innovative products in the new food segment or undertaking complex process development work, the GEA Process Test Center (PTC) for separation technology is an equal partner that brings considerable experience and pioneering spirit to the table. Minimize risks with the trailblazer of the new food industry Test before you invest – while it may sound like an invitation, it is in fact the service offered by our in-house PTC to ambitious food manufacturers, allowing them to use the specialist expertise and state-of-the-art testing facility to find the perfect …


liberation labs precision fermentation plant

© Liberation Labs

Agronomics Invests $10M in Liberation Labs to Advance its 600,000 L Precision Fermentation Facility

Agronomics Limited (LSE: ANIC), the UK’s leading VC company focused on cellular agriculture and biomanufacturing, has invested $10 million in its portfolio company, Liberation Labs Holdings, a US biotechnology firm focused on large-scale precision fermentation manufacturing. The investment was part of a $12.5 million financing round, which was made through a Secured Convertible Promissory Note (SCPN) using Agronomics’ existing cash resources. Previous investor Siddhi Capital also joined the round to help fund the ongoing construction of Liberation Labs’s facility in Richmond, Indiana. Agronomics has invested $17.6 million in Liberation Labs, including $7 million to join the CDMO company on its mission to propel fermented proteins and other bio-based solutions. According to the announcement, Agronomics now holds a 37.5% stake in Liberation Labs. Jim Mellon, Executive …


Givaudan, MISTA, and Bühler, three top players in the food industry, reveal the establishment of a cutting-edge extrusion hub at the MISTA Innovation Center in San Francisco.

Inauguration of new extrusion hub at MISTA Innovation Center in San Francisco - Image provided

Givaudan, MISTA, and Bühler Launch New Extrusion Hub for Plant-Based Products in USA

Givaudan, MISTA, and Bühler, three top players in the food industry, announce the launch of a cutting-edge extrusion hub at the MISTA Innovation Center in San Francisco, USA. The new facility advances MISTA’s capabilities in driving food innovation, while Givaudan and Bühler have teamed up to provide a platform for conducting product development trials for extruded products.  The hub features a 30mm twin-screw Bühler extruder capable of high and low-moisture extrusion, making it suitable for various products, including plant-based meats, cereals, and snacks. According to the announcement, the facility’s extruding equipment is larger than benchtop extruders and offers a high output capacity of 50 kilograms per hour. By leveraging these capabilities, companies can translate their trials into full-scale production equipment. At the same time, they …


Innohas plant-based food facility

© Innohas

Innohas Opens “World’s Largest” Plant-Based Food Facility in South Korea

South Korea’s Innohas has announced the opening of its second manufacturing site — claimed to be the world’s largest fully plant-based food facility — in the city of Jecheon. The factory will produce Korean-style plant-based foods to be sold under Innohas’ Sunlit Foods brand. This will cater to the growing demand for Korean cuisine worldwide, while also making it easier for Koreans to adopt a plant-based diet. The site’s facilities will include Korea’s largest frozen kimbap production line, dedicated plant-based BBQ and deep-frying lines, and an exclusive oven line for plant-based products. This will allow for the production of both finished products and ingredients. The Sunlit Foods brand currently offers 11 ready-to-eat meals, including Plant-based Bulgogi, Vegetable Kimbap, Plant-based Bulgogi Japchae, and Plant-based Bibimbap. The …


Coperion introduces new extrusion unit

© Coperion

Coperion Introduces “Texture Solutions” for Plant-Based and Cultivated Meat

Coperion, a leader in compounding and twin screw extrusion equipment and systems for alternative proteins, has developed an innovative texturizing unit for its extruder to help manufacturers mimic animal flesh more easily. Called the MEGAtex S7, Coperion’s new equipment is mounted at the discharge of the ZSK Food Extruder, allowing producers to switch between making texturized vegetable proteins (TVP) and high-moisture meat analogs (HMMA). TVP and HMMA products are manufactured using accurate feeding systems and a food extruder. When the melt discharges from the extruder, the setup significantly differs. While 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 and forced into a laminar flow, creating a meat-like structure. Extrusion …


DSM opens new plant for beverages

© dsm firmenich

DSM-Firmenich to Develop Plant-Based Beverages at Recently Inaugurated New Jersey Pilot Plant

DSM-Firmenich recently opened a new pilot plant in Plainsboro, New Jersey. The facility, located in the Taste, Texture & Health business unit, aims to promote and optimize collaboration with customers. It supports the company’s goal of accelerating the global nutritional transition by developing healthier and plant-based food and beverage options. The pilot plant was designed to enable close collaboration between DSM-Firmenich teams and customers during benchtop development. It also serves to incorporate consumer feedback into the entire development process, the company explains. The facility has extensive facilities and equipment to enable customers to make the transition from laboratory development to small-batch production, which is intended to facilitate and accelerate preparation for mass production. The pilot plant focuses on scaling beverage production and is designed for …


Errigal Bay facility

© Errigal Bay

Irish Shellfish Producer to Open Oat Milk Facility Following Decline in Demand for Seafood

Irish shellfish producer Errigal Bay is set to open an oat milk facility in the county of Donegal, citing decreased demand for seafood and a growing market for plant-based products. The facility will be located next to one of Errigal Bay’s existing seafood processing facilities, in an area originally intended as a seafood cold store. However, the cold store is no longer needed due to changing market conditions; in a recently approved planning application, Errigal Bay noted that the loading on its existing facility has reduced in recent years, since “seafood production has experienced a decline in demand”. Consequently, the company intends to protect its existing employees and create further job opportunities by entering the plant-based sector. The new facility will also help to support …


GEA unveils a new technology called perfusion, which includes the use of pilot scale bioreactors and a machine for rejuvenating the grown media.

Image courtesy of GEA

GEA Unveils “Technological Milestone” for Food Biomanufacturing, Cutting Production Costs of Alt Proteins

GEA, a global leader in engineering systems for the food, beverage, and pharmaceutical industries, is unveiling what it claims to be a “technological milestone” — the perfusion platform — at the Anuga FoodTec trade show in Cologne, Germany. The perfusion platform consists of the GEA Axenic-line bioreactors and the GEA kytero single-use separator, designed to enhance productivity and cost efficiency in cell cultivation and precision fermentation. The technology promises to level the price difference between conventional and alternative foods. Tatjana Krampitz, Head of New Food Technology Management at GEA, comments, “We see perfusion as one of the most promising technologies because it cuts the production cost of alternative proteins on several fronts.”  Separating the cells GEA’s perfusion technology separates cells from already depleted nutrient solution and …


Chickpea flour in a bowl and a bag of raw chickpeas

© Supplant Foods

India’s Supplant Foods Secures Patent for Functional and Flavorless Chickpea Flour

Supplant Foods, a company based in India that sources, processes, and markets high-quality plant-based ingredients, announces that it has secured a patent for a method to produce a high-performance chickpea flour for plant-based alternatives and gluten-free foods. Developed by Supplant Foods’ team of researchers and experts, the patented process enhances the functionality of chickpea protein, effectively eliminates the compounds responsible for undesired off-flavors, and removes the color, expanding its use for food and beverages. Headquartered in Pune, Maharashtra, Supplant Foods has access to raw materials and low-cost quality manufacturing, allowing it to create a long-term, sustained value chain of sustainable products. The company has distribution partners in the US, Canada, Mexico, UK, and Australia, in addition to India.   The taste challenge Despite the health and sustainability …


Image courtesy of Swan Neck Bio

Swan Neck Bio Launches FlexCell for Fast and Affordable Fermentation Scaling

Swan Neck Bio, a spin-off from White Labs Copenhagen, a global leader in fermentation since 1995, has officially entered the market to unlock the biomanufacturing capacity of precision fermentation and biomass companies. Headquartered in Copenhagen, with supporting labs and production capabilities in the USA (California and North Carolina), Swan Neck Bio leverages a patented “breakthrough” technology developed by White Labs.  Called FlexCell, the technology allows companies to trial, validate, and scale microorganisms from the lab to 1,000 L more quickly and affordably. Fábio Faria-Oliveira, CSO of the company, shares: “Our dream is a world where there are no constraints to the innovative biosolutions our world urgently needs if we’re going to support a constantly growing population.”  Scaling without risks Troels Prahl, a microbiologist with over 20 …


NIZO Sustainable Protein Innovation Test Centre


NIZO Opens Sustainable Protein Innovation & Test Centre in the Netherlands

Contract research organisation NIZO has officially opened its Sustainable Protein Innovation & Test Centre (SPRINT) in Ede, the Netherlands. The construction of the facility was a two-year project, involving a €5 million investment from NIZO along with further funding from The East Netherlands Development Agency (Oost NL) and the EU. The centre aims to address the challenges of sustainable food production, aiding in the transition from animal-based to plant-based and microbial proteins. Though NIZO already had a pilot plant for food research, it was mainly focused on processing milk and other liquids. After witnessing the increased interest in alternative protein research, the organisation decided to extend its existing facility with the aim of helping companies producing meat and dairy alternatives to scale up. SPRINT is …


Nestlé opens plant-based facility in Serbia

© Nestlé

Nestlé Opens Plant-Based Facility in Serbia to Manufacture Garden Gourmet Products

Nestlé has officially opened a facility in Serbia to produce its plant-based Garden Gourmet products. Sited next to the company’s existing facility in Surčin, the site cost 80 million CHF (around $91.3 million) to build and has created 220 new jobs. The opening ceremony was attended by the Serbian President, Aleksandar Vučić, along with other notable politicians. The guests were given a tour of the 18,440-square-meter facility, which includes environmental initiatives such as insulation panels made from recycled Nestlé packaging and an on-site wastewater treatment plant. Nestlé has pledged to empower Serbian farmers by using locally-produced ingredients at the facility. The company has already established a partnership with a local soy protein producer, and has helped it switch to regenerative agriculture to strengthen natural ecosystems. …


Van Heron Labs has raised $1.1 million in a seed round to develop precision nutrition strategies for maximizing cell growth in biomanufacturing.

Image courtesy of Van Heron Labs

Van Heron Labs Raises $1.1M to Revolutionize Cell Growth with Precision Nutrition Strategies

Van Heron Labs, a US biotechnology company developing precision nutrition strategies for maximizing cell growth, has raised $1.1 million in a seed round led by FoodLabs, an early-stage VC investor in food, health, and climate solutions. Van Heron Labs aims to support the growth of the emerging bioeconomy by using the power of genetics, bioinformatics, and AI to address critical industrial challenges, such as cell growth, in food, materials, cancer therapeutics, and vaccine biomanufacturing. With the newly raised funds, the company will further improve its technology platform and commercialize existing offerings and services.  “We are excited to lead the funding round in Van Heron Labs, as we firmly believe that their innovative approach to optimizing cellular nutrition has the potential to revolutionize multiple industries, including biopharma, biomanufacturing, …


Vivici fermentation unit

© Vivici

Global Biomanufacturing Capacity Must Grow 20X to Reach Industry Growth of $200 Billion by 2040, Says New Report

A recent report, co-authored by the New York-based biotech firm Synonym and Boston Consulting Group, has outlined a roadmap for the biomanufacturing industry, predicting a potential explosion to a $200 billion market in specialty sectors over the next ten years. The report Breaking the Cost Barrier on Biomanufacturing encourages the transition to biomanufacturing to address issues of sustainability and cost-efficiency in current industrial production methods. However, the report’s estimated $200 billion market value is focused on precision fermentation to produce food ingredients, chemicals, and chemical precursors. According to the authors, the figure is considered conservative and reflects only a fraction of the potential for growth within the industry. “The big problem—and the reason that precision fermentation remains an underused technology despite continuing advances in genome engineering and …


© Handtmann

Handtmann Showcases Molding System Suitable for Production of Vegan Products at AnugaFoodTec

Handtmann, a specialist in forming, portioning, dosing, and packaging systems for the food industry, is to present a new option for producing molded and filled products at the AnugaFoodTec show this March. The new Handtmann all-in-one molding system FS 525 offers manufacturers of snack and convenience products a new option to further expand the possibilities in the production of molded products: the co-extrusion function. The molding system offers flexibility for both free molding and for molding and separating vegetarian and vegan alternative products, among others. The additional co-extrusion function now enables the production of a wide variety of filled products. The FS 525 forming and cutting system combines two different forming principles for maximum flexibility in industrial applications (perforated plate forming technology for freely shaped …


Float Foods now offers its "revolutionary" technology for producing plant-based egg ingredients to food manufacturers.

© Image courtesy of Float Foods

Float Foods Introduces Licensed Technology for Plant-Based Egg Yolk Manufacturing

Singapore’s plant-based egg brand, Float Foods, known for its OnlyEg products, including Eg Yolk and OnlyEg Patties, announces that it has received the FSSC 22000 License (Food Safety System Certification) for its already Halal-certified facility.  After this manufacturing milestone, Float Foods now offers its “revolutionary” technology for producing plant-based egg ingredients to food producers seeking to eliminate hen eggs from their production processes. Float Foods has developed a “machine” to create alternatives to eggs that are said to have the same taste and texture as traditional eggs: yolks that ooze and egg whites with bouncy elastic texture and elasticity. They can be served ‘raw’ or used as an ingredient in multiple applications, including pasta, noodles, sauces, pastries, mayonnaise, and baking products. Vinita Choolani, Float Foods’ founder …


Anton Paar Offers “Field Guide to Plant-Based Food Analysis”, an Indispensable Whitepaper for Plant-Based Food Manufacturing

Get the free e-book In response to the burgeoning demand for plant-based alternatives in the food industry, Anton Paar proudly presents an invaluable resource for professionals and enthusiasts alike: the e-book on Plant-Based Food Analysis. As the global landscape shifts towards sustainable and healthier dietary choices, understanding the complexities of plant-based ingredients and products becomes paramount. Anton Paar’s analytical instrumentation portfolio offers a cutting-edge solution to expedite the formulation, development, production, and quality control of novel plant-based foods. This comprehensive e-book delves into the essential facets of plant-based food analysis, providing a wealth of knowledge for those navigating the evolving landscape of plant-based diets. With a focus on safety, consistency, shelf life, and taste, Anton Paar‘s expertise shines through as it addresses the challenges and …




GEA Announces $20 Million Investment in Wisconsin Alternative Protein Technology Center

GEA, a global leader in engineering systems for the food, beverage, and pharmaceutical industries, has revealed plans to invest EUR 18 million (approximately USD 20 million) in a state-of-the-art technology center focused on alternative proteins in Wisconsin, USA.  The new facility, to be located on the GEA Campus in Janesville, will specialize in piloting microbial, cell-based, and plant-based food technologies. The construction is scheduled to begin in spring 2024, and with an anticipated opening in 2025, the center aims to bridge the current gap in the market for industrial-scale production of alternative proteins. The technology center will help gear the company up to support the industry’s anticipated growth, as indicated in a GEA survey last year, which found that chefs expect a quarter of meals …