New School Foods Enlists Chef Matthew Kenney for Plant-Based Salmon Fillet Launch

Plant-based seafood innovator, New School Foods, has welcomed Chef Matthew Kenney as a member of its Culinary Council. The council, an exclusive group of chefs and restaurateurs, will collaborate with New School Foods as the company prepares for the commercial launch of its plant-based salmon fillet later this year.

Based in Toronto, Canada, New School Foods specializes in developing whole-cut, plant-based seafood that replicates conventional seafood’s texture, taste, nutritional benefits, and cooking experience. The collaboration aims to gather insights from established culinary experts to guide the final development of whole-muscle meat alternatives and support the growth of New School Foods’ network of restaurants.

“We’re creating a culinary experience that customers won’t believe can be done with plants”

Chef Kenney, an American celebrity chef and the founder of Ascention, a plant-based IP holding company, will contribute by creating new recipes featuring New School Foods’ whole-cut salmon fillet. These recipes will showcase the product’s versatility, suitable for various cooking methods such as sous vide, baking, roasting, sautéing, and smoking. Additionally, Chef Kenney will act as an advocate and consultant for New School Foods, assisting with menu placement, particularly in the Los Angeles area.

Plant-based Salmon Filet
©New School Foods

“When it comes to meat alternatives, there is no more demanding audience than professional chefs. If your product does not look, cook, and taste like the real thing, you are better off in the grocery store, because chefs will not compromise. I speak from first-hand experience when I say that the products New School Foods developed are nothing short of a plant-based miracle.

Proprietary whole muscle technology

New School Foods unveiled its plant-based salmon fillet in February 2023, featuring proprietary scaffolding technology used to recreate muscle fibers that mimic the texture of raw meat and fish. The company’s technology also includes directional freezing for a clear raw-to-cooked transition and a novel connective tissue solution preserving the expected “flakiness” in fish.

In the same month, the company announced it had raised $12 million in seed funding from global investors, including Lever VC, Blue Horizon, Hatch, and Good Startup. Additionally, a significant investment of $11.4 million from Protein Industries Canada was announced for a joint project between New School Foods, Liven Proteins, and NuWave Research to commercialize whole-muscle salmon at the end of 2023.

©New School Foods

Chef tested and approved

Founder and CEO of New School Foods, Chris Bryson, commented, “From Day 0, we developed this product with chefs in mind. As tastemakers, chefs, and restaurateurs sit at the intersection between product and consumer – they represent a critical piece of the puzzle when it comes to developing a product that consumers crave. If it won’t work for a chef, why would the consumer care?

“By putting our fish in the hands of Chef Kenney, not only are we able to make sure our products is battle-tested for the rigors of a commercial kitchen, but we’re able to provide a diverse range of easy & delicious recipes that are sure to delight and surprise customers, while highlighting the flexibility that comes with the different ways our Salmon Fillet can be cooked. Together, we’re creating a culinary experience that customers won’t believe can be done with plants.”

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