Canada’s Wamame Foods – the plant-based food producer known for creating Waygu, the world’s first plant-based wagyu beef – forms part of an international collaboration to expand its product line. The $7.6 million project will use ground-breaking plant-based research to create a suite of high-quality meat alternatives with beef textures to be sold under the Waygu brand.
A subsidiary of Top Tier Foods, Wamame Foods will lead a consortium of companies including Protein Industries Canada, Merit Functional Foods, University of British Columbia’s Faculty of Land and Food Systems, and Wismettac Asian Foods – one of the largest Japanese food distributors in North America.
Through honoring traditional Japanese cooking and fermentation techniques, Wamame will use the funding to focus on research and development in taste and texture, specifically in fat and how it is incorporated into whole muscle plant fibers. The new line of Waygu beef alternatives is expected in 2022.
Waygu – the plant-based version of wagyu, a type of luxury Japanese beef – was trialed this year at Advanced Fresh Concepts, the largest sushi franchise in the US, and has even impressed Japanese master chefs.
“As COP 26 climate conference continues, the world can see clearly that there is a massive need to re-think the environmental impact of our food systems. At Wamame we believe the answer lies in investing in alternatives that will exceed the quality of one of the most unsustainable options, industrialized beef. This project aims to build on the success of our widely acclaimed Waygu™ line by developing a suite of alternatives to Wagyu beef, widely considered the world’s best tasting beef,” stated Wamame’s President, Blair Bullus.