Food & Beverage

Forget Extrusion. Umiami is Here.

Left: a typical chicken substitute produced by high-moisture extrusion. Right: Umiami’s chicken breast made with their proprietary technology. ©Umiami

Ever wondered why whole chicken breasts, tenderloins, or large cuts of fish don’t usually have a plant-based counterpart? The answer is simply because most current technologies are too limiting to achieve such products. And that’s exactly where the French startup Umiami comes in. The company is only months away from producing the world’s first whole-cuts at scale. What’s more, its products are available to other brands through private labelling.

Tristan Maurel, CEO, and co-founder of Umiami, explains: “Until now, there were only two options: dry extrusion to create minced products such as burger patties or sausages, and wet extrusion to create small chicken-like pieces. However, no technology allowed to create thick fibrous whole cuts of meat.”

“We’re only months away from being the first company worldwide to produce plant-based chicken breasts at scale,”

To recreate the complex fibrous structure of meat, the company has developed a unique technological platform. CTO Hugo Dupuis, explains: “With our process, we can create thick products – up to 8 cm or 3 inches thick – in which we master the direction of the meat-like fibres. Moreover, our technology results in higher levels of succulency and fewer flavour losses compared to HME [High-moisture extrusion]. It allows us to create a wide variety of unique plant-based meats and fish. The possibilities are just almost endless.”

Umiami’s products replicate the complex texture and fibrous structure of a chicken breast. ©Umiami

The current focus is on poultry. “We’re only months away from being the first company worldwide to produce plant-based chicken breasts at scale,” states Martin Habfast, head of sales.

Moreover, the products don’t compromise on clean labelling: they contain no texturing agents, no gums, no methylcellulose, and have excellent nutritional profiles. Their chicken breast is made using only a few ingredients.

Umiami sells its products to strong brands through private label partnerships and is always looking to partner with companies all around the world. Contact [email protected].

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