Avena Foods oats and pulses

© Avena Foods

Investments & Acquisitions

Protein Industries Canada Announces $19.2M Investment in Canadian Plant-Based Ingredients Project

Global innovation cluster Protein Industries Canada has unveiled a $19.2 million investment initiative to develop innovative Canadian ingredients for new snack and food options. Avena Foods, a key player in this project, will leverage the funding to create oat and pulse ingredients that will replace processing aids in products by Big Mountain Foods, Danone Canada, and Old Dutch Foods. This will lead to new consumer offerings, including allergy-friendly alternatives. The Honourable François-Philippe Champagne, Minister of Innovation, Science, and Industry, stated, “The global food market is in need of sustainable and nutritious ingredients, and Canada is helping meet that demand. By supporting projects like this one, Protein Industries Canada, one of Canada’s global innovation clusters, is securing Canada’s position as a global supplier of plant-based ingredients.” Protein …

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Girl drinking milk in school

© Lightfield Studios - stock.adobe.com

Fermentation

Canada’s Renaissance BioScience Receives Government Funding to Develop Yeast Solution for the Off-Flavors of Plant Proteins

The Vancouver-based yeast bioengineering company Renaissance BioScience has been awarded CAD $232,000 in funding from the Canadian Food Innovation Network to develop a revolutionary product for plant-based protein products.  Renaissance is working on a pioneering project with food industry partners to develop and commercialize a non-GMO solution to neutralize compounds that lead to off-flavors and undesirable aromas in plant-based flours and proteins. In addition to enhancing taste, the yeast aims to eliminate the need for commonly used “flavor masking” ingredients by providing a clean-label solution for manufacturers; on a product’s ingredient list, the yeast solution will be simply identified as “yeast.” Better flavor for a growing market Despite the health and sustainability benefits that plant-based alternatives to animal products offer, widespread consumer acceptance is hindered …

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Louis Dreyfus Company pea protein plant

© Louis Dreyfus Company

Agriculture / Agribusiness

New Pea Production Facility in Canada Set to Boost North American Pea Protein Supply

The Louis Dreyfus Company (LDC), a multinational agriculture and food processing company, has announced plans to establish a pea protein isolate production plant within its industrial complex in Saskatchewan, Canada complex. The new facility aims to enhance the company’s Plant Proteins business line, catering to the rising demand for sustainable, plant-based protein alternatives. Michael Gelchie, CEO of LDC, noted that the production plant is a pivotal element of the company’s North American growth strategy, which includes other industrial centers in Claypool, Indiana, and Upper Sandusky, Ohio, in the US. Gelchie commented, “Like other key development projects for LDC in North America, the investment announced today is an important step in the Group’s global growth strategy, as part of our plans to diversify revenue through value-added …

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Konscious Foods

© Konscious Foods

Investments & Finance

Protein Industries Canada Partners with Konscious Foods to Elevate Plant-Based Seafood

Protein Industries Canada has introduced a significant initiative for the Canadian alternative seafood sector with its collaboration with Konscious Foods, Avena Foods, and Canadian Pacifico Seaweeds (CPS). Leveraging the success of Konscious Foods’ frozen and ready-to-eat plant-based sushi, this project aims to enhance the nutritional value of existing plant-based seafood products while also developing novel offerings. The project has already garnered praise from government officials for its contribution to addressing the global demand for seafood alternatives and bolstering Canada’s position in the plant-based food market. François-Philippe Champagne, Minister of Innovation, Science and Industry of Canada, stated, “There is an ever-growing global demand for seafood, and this project is helping to meet that demand by offering an alternative plant-based option that expands the range of healthy …

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Remilk has become the first company to receive the green light in Canada for a precision fermentation-derived protein.

Image courtesy of Remilk

Fermentation

Remilk Receives No Objections Letter for Sale of Animal-Free Milk Protein, Heralding “New-Dairy Revolution” in Canada

Israeli biotech company Remilk announces that it has obtained Health Canada’s “Letter of No Objection,” allowing the use and commercialization of its animal-free milk protein called BLG within Canada. With this achievement, Remilk has become the first company to receive the green light in the country for a precision fermentation-derived protein.  According to the announcement, Health Canada conducted a thorough evaluation and deemed Remilk’s animal-free protein safe for consumption. As a result, Canada has opened the door for new dairy products, including milk, ice cream, yogurt, and cream cheese, made with novel proteins instead of traditional milk proteins. “This is an important day for us at Remilk, and a historic one for Canada as it opens its doors to the new-dairy revolution. We developed a strategic roadmap for …

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© Komo Plant Based Foods

Market & Trends

Why it’s Imperative for Meat-Free Products in Canada to Target Meat-Eaters

A recent survey conducted by food services management company Sodexo Canada finds that while a huge proportion (74%) of Canadians are unwilling to completely give up meat — significantly higher than the global average of 42% — followed by 67% for fish and 54% for dairy, almost half (46%) are interested in reducing animal proteins for plant proteins and 46% are willing to reduce their intake of dairy products. Ultimately, this data as well as the further data below evidences that Canadian consumers refuse to quit animal products but do have a desire to replace some meat and dairy with animal-free alternatives. Producers and marketers should therefore strive to make this easy for the consumer and target the flexitarian group with inclusive language and marketing. …

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Plant Up

Supplied by Plant Up

Products & Launches

Plant Up Unveils New Plant-Based Appetizers, Now Available at 650+ Canadian Retailers

Plant Up, a Canadian producer of plant-based frozen meals, has expanded its product range with the launch of two new appetizers: Butter Chik’n Bites and Shawarma Bites. These latest additions are a continuation of Plant Up’s globally inspired plant-based product lineup, aiming to cater to the growing diversity of consumers in Canada. Aamir Malkani, the founder and CEO of Plant Up, comments on the growing diversity in Canadian food preferences: “With over 500,000 people moving to Canada each year, mainstream retailers seem to have taken notice of this. As the lines between the international aisle and mainstream aisles blur, ethnic foods have gone from a ‘Nice’ to have to ‘Need’ to have. “Plant Up is positioned in a sweet spot as it embraces this diversity …

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Swiss biotech company Evolva

© Evolva

Investments & Acquisitions

Canadian Yeast Specialist Lallemand Acquires Swiss Biotech Company Evolva

Lallemand Inc., a Canadian company specializing in yeast-based ingredients, has confirmed that its subsidiary Danstar Ferment AG has acquired Swiss biotech company Evolva AG. Similarly to Lallemand, Evolva is focused on researching, developing, and commercializing natural yeast-derived ingredients. The company’s products are used in several sectors, including flavors and fragrances, health ingredients, cosmetics, and health protection. The transaction was announced to the Swiss Stock Exchange on November 21, and was confirmed by shareholders of Evolva Holding — Evolva’s previous parent company — at a general meeting on December 21. The initial purchase price is CHF 20 million (US$23.5 million), though this may be adjusted. Evolva Holding may also receive a payout of up to CHF 10 million (US$11.75 million) if certain product-based sales targets are …

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chicken bouillon Lallemand

© Lallemand

Ingredients

Revolutionizing Plant-Based Eating: A New Sensory Experience with Savor-Lyfe® CI

In recent years, a growing awareness of sustainability concerns, food security issues, and the environmental and public health consequences associated with industrial animal agriculture has prompted a shift towards plant-based diets. While the demand for plant-based products has surged, there remains a challenge to develop alternatives that not only cater to niche markets but also resonate with mainstream consumers. Flexitarian consumers, consciously reducing their meat intake for health, environmental, and animal welfare reasons, are driving significant expansion within the plant-based food market. According to Mintel’s 2024 Global Food & Drink Trends, consumers are no longer willing to compromise taste and cost for sustainability credentials. As the cost of living rises, companies are faced with the challenge of delivering on all fronts – taste, cost, and …

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WOOP4 plant-based seafood

© WOOP4

Products & Launches

Vegan Piranha, Anyone? WOOP4 Arrives on the Alt Seafood Scene with Innovative Fish Alternatives

WOOP4, a new plant-based food company, arrives on the Canadian market this week, debuting with a new line of 100% vegan and allergen-free fish alternatives including vegan piranha (also the name of a hardcore punk band, apparently). The product line includes plant-based versions of popular fish such as salmon, smoked salmon, and tuna, as well as innovative options currently untapped in the market, like tropical piranha and mahi-mahi. These products are designed to replicate the taste and texture of their conventional counterparts and are free from allergens like soy, gluten, peanuts, nuts, dairy, eggs, sesame, or mustard, which serves as a main selling point for the brand. Additionally, WOOP4’s offerings contain omega-3, vegetable proteins, and other nutritional benefits. The company’s new fish alternatives are available …

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Anne-Marie Gendreau of Lallemand

Anne-Marie Gendreau of Lallemand ©MCF

Interviews

Lallemand: “The Plant-Based Market is Moving Forward Rapidly, and Innovation is Key”

Anne-Marie Gendreau is a Canadian pastry chef and food scientist. She is the North American Applied R&D team leader at Lallemand Bio-Ingredients. Anne-Marie is known for her ability to develop formulations and provide customized support across a broad range of food product categories. She embraces the challenge and variety in making plant-based savory applications or sweeter plant-based developments. Can you highlight some of the unique properties of Lallemand’s plant-based ingredients and how they contribute to the quality of plant-based products? Recently, we’ve been developing yeast extract-composed flavor bases, Savor-Lyfe® CI is the latest addition to the product line. The typical meaty yeast extract flavor profile is elaborated to contribute more specifically to the poultry flavor of plant-based foods. How does Lallemand approach innovation in the development …

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Protein Industries Canada salmon announcement

globenewswire / Protein Industries Canada

Protein

$11.4M Investment Set to Revolutionize Canadian Market With “Category First” Whole Muscle Salmon

Protein Industries Canada announces a significant investment in the advancement of novel food options for Canadian consumers, marking the inaugural project investment within its second mandate. The initiative will combine the expertize of New School Foods, Liven Proteins, and NuWave Research to commercialize a plant-based whole-muscle salmon product, and notably, the announcement shortly follows the formation of the world’s first alternative seafood association, Future Ocean Foods. The three companies will work together to bring to market a whole-muscle cut of plant-based salmon “that transforms from raw to cooked” (no further information is given as to the manner of the “transformation”). Described as a category first, the media release states that the salmon product will offer the same taste and texture as conventional salmon. A trio …

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LMI_Facility Lovingly Made

© Lovingly Made Ingredients

Investments & Acquisitions

Canada’s Protein Powered Farms Acquires Meatless Farms Subsidiary Lovingly Made Ingredients

Protein Powered Farms, the owner and operator of Canada’s largest plant protein extraction facility, has announced the acquisition of Lovingly Made Ingredients, a subsidiary of well-known UK plant-based meat brand Meatless Farm.  Lovingly Made Ingredients operates an extrusion facility for plant-based products in Calgary, Alberta. Constructed by Meatless Farms in 2021 to capture the North American plant-based meat market, it is said to be Canada’s largest extrusion facility. In a separate acquisition move, Meatless Farms was famously taken over by VFC this summer after facing bankruptcy. Impressively, the company returned to business almost immediately and its products were swiftly relisted at Tesco, Sainsbury’s, and Ocado.  Shannon Hood-Niefer, CTO of Lovingly Made Ingredients, said, “I am really excited about this acquisition. I have spent over 15 …

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Clif Pet Dog Eating Carrot/ Veggies

©Clif Bar

Studies & Numbers

Study Finds Good Health Outcomes in Dogs Fed a Plant-Based Diet

A new study published in the British Journal of Nutrition has found equally good health outcomes in dogs eating plant-based and meat-based diets. For three months, the study (conducted at Canada’s University of Guelph) fed 31 dogs an experimental extruded vegan food, while 30 dogs received a commercial extruded meat-based food. Comprehensive tests were then conducted using blood and urine tests, x-rays, and veterinary examinations. The results showed that all dogs maintained their health parameters and body weight throughout the three-month period. In particular, the study examined whether vitamin D2 (found in plants) would be as beneficial as vitamin D3 (found in meat). The study concluded that vitamin D2 is efficacious in maintaining dogs’ total vitamin D levels. There was no impact on bone mineral …

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Forward Food plant based cafeteria

© Forward Food

Food Service

SFU and Forward Food Summit: Educational Institutions Shaping Plant-Based Food Market

On November 2nd, Simon Fraser University (SFU) in British Columbia, Canada, partnered with Humane Society International and its Forward Food initiative to host the SFU and Forward Food Summit (Plant-Based Edition). This event provided a platform for food service professionals and leaders to come together, facilitating networking opportunities and equipping them with the necessary skills to integrate plant-based foods into their menus, with the goal of promoting a more sustainable and locally sourced food system. The summit featured a lineup of expert speakers and panelists, including Brent Loken, the global food lead scientist for WWF Global Science, and Amy Symington, nutrition professor and plant-based chef at George Brown College. In addition to the informative sessions, 24 chefs participated in specialized training, showcasing how to effectively …

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bettermoo(d) Moodrink product

Image credit: bettermoo(d) FB

Retail & E-Commerce

bettermoo(d) Announces Significant Retail Collaboration with Whole Foods Canada

Vancouver-based bettermoo(d) announces a significant retail collaboration with Whole Foods Market which the company states is expected to result in the availability of its Moodrink product nationwide in retailers across Canada. News of the retail deal closely follows the company’s partnership with United Natural Food Canada through which it gained access to over 5,000 points of sale. Moodrink, its flagship product, is an oat-based milk free from added gums and sugar, offering functional, mood-enhancing ingredients; a “special herbal blend that mimics the delicious dairy products of Europe’s alpine regions, true to the motto “What A Cow Eats and A Human Needs”.” Radical innovator bettermoo(d) states that the product’s USP is its high vegetable protein content and ability to produce barista-quality foam, which it claims sets …

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Food Centre fermentation burgers

© Saskatchewan Food Industry Development Centre Inc

Manufacturing & Technology

Saskatchewan’s Food Centre Advances Precision Fermentation in Canada with New Facility

The Saskatchewan Food Industry Development Centre Inc. (Food Centre) is making significant strides in the construction of its cutting-edge Advanced Food Ingredients Centre, set to provide a unique platform for contract research and manufacturing services in the fields of precision fermentation and bioengineering in Canada. The state-of-the-art fermentation facility, designed to accommodate production scaling of up to 20,000 liters, will serve as a transitional platform for companies, enabling them to experiment with and manufacture precision fermentation products before committing to establishing their own large-scale production facilities. “Precision fermentation requires highly specialized equipment for production at large scales in the order of 100,000 to 1 million L capacities for sustainable, economical, and routine production. For many of the SMEs, the cost of establishing such infrastructure may …

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Hershey Canada Oat Made chocolate bars

© Hershey Canada

Products & Launches

Hershey Canada Debuts ‘Hershey’s Oat Made’ Bar Created with Oat Flour

Hershey Canada, a wholly-owned subsidiary of The Hershey Company, has officially introduced its first plant-based chocolate bar: Hershey’s Oat Made.  Carly Cowman, brand manager at Hershey Canada, states, “Hershey’s Oat Made bars are everything you love about milk chocolate… except the milk. Our product development team did an unbelievable job delivering the smooth and creamy texture that we know Canadians love and expect from HERSHEY’S in our first-ever plant-based bar.” This new chocolate bar is available in two flavors – Creamy and Almond & Sea Salt, and offers the classic smooth and creamy taste that Hershey’s is known for with a fully vegan formulation. The core ingredient of these plant-based bars is oat flour, and they are Non-GMO Project verified and free from artificial flavors. …

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Impossible Meatballs

©Impossible Foods

Market & Trends

Ernst & Young Study Defies Plant-Based Market Decline, Anticipates Global Growth to Soar from $16.5 to $139 Billion by 2035

A recent study conducted by Ernst & Young projects substantial, global growth in plant-based protein sales by 2035. According to the report, global plant-based meat sales are anticipated to soar from $16.5 billion in 2021 to $139.4 billion by 2035, representing a compound annual growth rate (CAGR) of 16.5 percent.  Funded by Protein Industries Canada, the study leverages data from the Food and Agriculture Organization, Good Food Institute, and other third-party sources to examine factors impacting the plant-based protein market, including increased price sensitivity, tight labor markets, higher preference for healthy foods and rapid growth in emerging markets.  Despite the short-term economic challenges, Bill Greuel, CEO of Protein Industries Canada, remains optimistic about the long-term prospects of the plant-based meat sector. He comments, “It’s been challenging …

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Grounded People winter boots

© Grounded People

Shoes

Grounded People Apparel launches Vegan, Ethical Winter Boot Collection

Grounded People Apparel Inc (CSE: SHOE), a Canadian ethical footwear company, presents the new All SZN Boot Collection. Grounded states this strategic move is also expected to strengthen customer loyalty and brand reputation, as it plans to make a name for itself in the multi-billion dollar winter footwear market and fill a niche for fashionable and sustainable winter footwear alternatives. With the goal of minimizing the fashion industry’s environmental footprint, Grounded’s 100% PETA APPROVED “All SZN Boot Collection” uses natural rubber and a vegan microfibre called OnMirco, an eco-friendly vegan leather microfiber. The launch comes after two notable, sustainable vegan footwear releases this year, following Grounded’s $2.5M raise this January. In March, the brand released a line of shoes crafted from recycled materials such as …

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