German wheat specialist Loryma, a brand of the Crespel & Deiters Group, has developed vegan concepts for wheat-based fish substitutes, as demand and interest for fish-free fish continues on a global level.
For context, and as we previously noted, a recent report by Data Bridge Market Research predicts that the plant-based seafood market will grow with a considerable CAGR of 28.5% through 2029; a previous report highlights alt seafood as a significant driver of the plant-based food market as a whole; and another from this June cites vegan seafood as an area of increased relevance to the industry as a whole. Additionally, this week ProVeg stated that although the alt seafood sector is still smaller than plant-based meat and dairy, it has experienced exponential growth and investment.
Loryma has created various concepts for vegan tuna that offer natural, fine-fibrous sensory properties and texture. Like the original, the vegan tuna can be processed using conventional production methods and, according to the company, is in no way inferior in terms of mouthfeel. The company says it has developed a recipe for delicatessen and frozen products as well as for the classic canned product. Manufacturers can adopt both concepts, adapt and flavor them individually.
In order to achieve a realistic structure, the fine Lory Tex® Snips and the long, fibrous Lory Tex® Fibers are mixed and rehydrated with water. This mixture can be further processed with coloring and flavorings to make meatballs, delicatessen salads, or as a topping for frozen food.
Vegan tuna in canned oil
For an authentic eating experience, Loryma has also designed a recipe for the canned fish substitute. The concept combines Lory® Tex Snips and Lory® Tex Fibers together with the wheat protein-based binder Lory® Bind and the modified wheat starch Lory® Starch Pearl. In this way, a bound mass with a loose texture is created, which is preserved in oil and filled into cans. The canned food is heated to ultra-high temperatures in an autoclave under high pressure, as is the case with the production of conventional canned tuna. Since the ingredients are process and heat-stable, the sensory properties are retained after preservation and have a long shelf life.
Consumers can use the canned alternative like the original, for example as a pizza or salad topping. Thanks to the extruded wheat protein, the vegan tuna contains around 19g of protein per 100g.
Norbert Klein, Head of Product Development at Loryma, explains: “Fish stocks are becoming increasingly scarce due to overfishing in the oceans. We offer a sustainable alternative by leaving the fish in the sea and making the tuna from wheat, which we mainly source regionally from Germany. The sensory properties of our vegan version are in no way inferior to the original. In addition, we are happy to support our customers in development and individualize the concept according to their ideas.”
Here you can read our Q&A with Loryma from last year.