Products & Launches

Dutch Spice Specialist Verstegen, Flavoring Meat Since 1886, Enters Plant-Based Meat Market with Ready Mixes

After three years of R&D, Verstegen Spices & Sauces, a Dutch family business flavoring meat, chicken, and fish since 1886, has launched Kneed & Klaar, a new range of 100% plant-based meat mixes at Albert Heijn in the Netherlands and Belgium. 

Described as convenient and perfect for preparing a quick and delicious meal any time, the Kneed & Klaar mixes allow customers to prepare a meat alternative in minutes by simply adding water and oil, kneading, and cooking.  

“This way you can grab a plant-based meat substitute from your pantry at any time!” Verstegen says. 

Unique taste profiles

The Kneed & Klaar lineup includes Plant Burgers in Classic and Jalapeño flavors, Easy Meatballs in Classic and Indian spices, and Legume Mince in Classic, Italian, and Spicy options, each offering a “unique” taste profile.

Verstegen's range of plant-based mixes for meat alternatives.
© Verstegen Spices & Sauces

The products are pea-based to provide an allergen and soy-free option and feature the company’s herbs and spices. They are said to be high in protein, iron, zinc, and vitamin B12, meeting the guidelines of the Wheel of Five (an information tool used by the Netherlands Nutrition Centre to give examples of healthy dietary patterns). All products have a shelf life of two years.

Changing customer needs

Verstegen has expanded its portfolio in the last decade with spices and sauces for vegetables and other vegetarian meal inspirations. Still, this launch marks Verstegen’s first expansion into the plant-based meat category.

In the Netherlands, 55% of the population is flexitarian, meaning many Dutch people are looking for alternatives at least three times per week to eat less meat, argues the Dutch firm.

A woman in the kitchen making meatballs with the plant-based mix
© © Verstegen Spices & Sauces

Following this trend, last year, Albert Heijn announced it would focus on the distribution and sales of plant-based proteins to achieve a 60% to 40% protein balance by 2030. Recently, the Dutch chain revealed that 44.1% of the proteins it sold last year were plant-based, up from 42.6% in 2022.

In addition to sustainable food production, Verstegen says it is actively expanding its corporate social responsibility (CSR) network in the Netherlands and partnerships with sustainability-oriented organizations like MVO Nederland and the Sustainable Spices Initiative.

Based in Rotterdam, the company operates in multiple countries, Belgium, the UK, Ireland, and Spain, but the Netherlands is its primary market. 

“At Verstegen we respond to changing customer needs. With this approach, we can continue to provide consumers with inspiring and surprising innovations, to enjoy responsible and healthy, but above all, delicious food,” states the company.

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