spirulina-based smoked salmon

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Report Advocates for Less Processed Ingredients to Reframe Negative Narrative Around UPFs

UK consultancy New Food Innovation has published a new report titled “Trust the Process – Why Less is More in Processed Foods.” Compiled by food scientist, chef, and author Anthony Warner, the report discusses the differences between highly processed and less processed foods, and how the latter could potentially address some of the negative impacts associated with highly ultra-processed foods (UPFs). According to Warner, since food processing is essential to feed people in our industrialised societies, we need to understand and address how processing impacts the healthfulness of foods rather than lumping all processed foods into the ‘all processing is bad’ narrative.  “Many advocates of the UPF system appear to ignore the highly relevant field of lower processing, because to embrace it would be to …


Jenny Chapman

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Op Ed: Churchill Fellow Jenny Chapman on Understanding Nuances Around the Ultra Processed Foods Debate in Plant-Based Meats

Jenny Chapman, Churchill Fellow and food systems researcher, recently published a report to support plant-based meat companies in navigating the “ultra-processed foods” debate. Jenny Chapman has a degree in Biology from the University of Oxford, a Masters in Taxonomy from Imperial College London, and a lifelong love of the natural world. Her desire to solve the world’s most pressing problems and passion for using science and evidence to improve the lives of humans and non-human animals led her to research safe, healthy, sustainable and ethical protein sources. Jenny was awarded a Churchill Fellowship in 2023 to investigate the adoption, acceptance and trust of plant-based meat. In this piece, Jenny describes why there is so much confusion surrounding the UPF term and what plant-based meat companies …


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Food & Beverage

Plant-Based Meat and the Ultra-Processed Food Debate: Where Next?

What is an ultra-processed food (UPF)? For the majority of consumers who do not wish to read the original multi-paragraph description, various shorthands have arisen. They are ‘foods your grandmother wouldn’t have eaten’, ‘foods wrapped in plastic’, and even ‘foods with ingredients you can’t pronounce’. Safe to say, the meaning of a UPF is contested, and poorly understood. Plant-based meat, however, has been firmly placed in the ultra-processed food category. In a survey by the British Nutrition Foundation, plant-based meat was the second most commonly associated food with UPFs. With this comes many of the negative connotations that are associated with the category. To untangle the complexity in the UPF debate, in its latest video, ProVeg International’s New Food Hub chat with food systems researcher …