Founded in 1881 and headquartered in Düsseldorf, Germany, GEA Food Solutions is one of the largest suppliers of technology in the world. Vegconomist had the pleasure of speaking with the company’s food application technologist, Nils Beyer, about GEA’s entrance into the meat replacement industry.
Can you please give us a brief overview of GEA Food Solutions?
GEA is an international engineering company and a major supplier for the food processing industry. Our focus is on providing leading equipment technologies, sharing process know-how and application expertise for meat and seafood, pure vegetable and meat replacement products.
GEA Food Solutions has all the ingredients to help you lead in a world of changing tastes.
Which equipment does GEA use for meat replacement products? Please explain the product range and latest innovations.
We have the GEA ProMix, a full programmable Mixer suitable for gentle and thoroughly mixing processes and needed for the rehydration of texturized vegetable proteins. Furthermore, it’s a great machine to mix vegetables and defrost them with our latest innovation: the ColdSteam M technology. This allows us to temper products with the same energy impact as from steam but under a lower temperature which prevents denaturation of functional proteins.
On the other hand, there is the CutMaster, a high-performance cutting and mixing machine, with the flexibility to prepare all needed components for meat replacement products in one machine.
Our portfolio begins at the preparation of the mix and goes over to the further processing which is forming, coating and frying of the products. We have perfect solutions for freezing and packaging solution of meat alternative products as well!
What makes GEA’s meat replacement equipment different from others on the market?
What really makes the difference is the combination of food technology know-how and the right equipment. There is a very competent expert team of food application technologists available to support our customers when it comes to product development, process optimization, and operator training. Our equipment provides both: best performance and reliability. The technology is always the latest state of the art, along with a worldwide network of service engineers who are always available to support our customers.
With GEA you get more. It’s an excellent after-sales service that provides the know-how you need.
What types of meat replacement products can the equipment be used for and do you have plans to expand this range?
There is a wide range of feasible products that can be created using our machines, starting with real meat imitating products like vegetarian beef burgers, chicken filets, or sausages. Other meat substitutes include alternatives like pure vegetable mixes, falafel or even hummus.
Day by day we are developing and improving our process technology which allows us to support food manufacturers to grow and expand in this market.
Please give a summary of the GEA webinar on meat replacement? How can people watch this online?
With our live webinars we want to transfer our knowledge to our customers. In short sessions we have experts talking about the current technologies, challenges and solutions. Participants will be able to ask their specific questions directly to GEA and get connected. A recording of the webinar can be accessed on the GEA website and detailed information material is available to download.