Food & Beverage

Above Food Partners With Umiami to Develop Plant-Based Whole Cuts

Vertically integrated plant-based marketplace Above Food has announced it will be partnering with French food-tech company Umiami to research and develop plant-based whole cuts.

Umiami has developed technology that allows for the production of larger cuts of plant-based meat than were previously possible. Commonly-used extrusion techniques allow for either a mince-like texture or small pieces of plant-based meat, but not whole cuts.

As part of the collaboration, Umiami will benefit from Above Food’s proprietary protein ingredients and scaling production processes. This will allow for more rapid development of plant-based whole cuts — both of alt-meat and alt-seafood.

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

“Seed to fork”

Above Food spent a year acquiring brands in the plant-based sector — including Atlantic Natural Foods, owner of vegan tuna brand TUNO — before launching its “seed to fork” DTC e-commerce platform in September of last year. The platform claims to offer “unparalleled traceability and qualifiable sustainability”.

Innovative technology

Meanwhile, Umiami has been attracting considerable attention for its technology, winning the Future Food Tech startup showcase and being named as a semifinalist at last year’s XPRIZE Foundation Challenge. The company also raised €2.3 million in a funding round last year.

“Above Food’s world-class expertise and seed-to-fork platform will allow us to expand beyond soy into other highly functional plant proteins,” said Umiami Co-founder, Martin Habfast. “We very much look forward to working with them, combining their knowledge of protein functionality and our proprietary texturization process, while also expanding our North American network.”

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