New plant-based seafood analog products debut in Asia, US
Plant-based and cell-cultured food manufacturers are rolling out new plant-based seafood analog products in recognition of World Oceans Day on 8 June.
Hong Kong-based OmniFoods, known for its imitation pork product OmniPork, is launching a line of plant-based seafood analog products that will include fish fillets, fish burgers, and tuna cuts.
"It is very much the major white space that has not been tapped. Everyone has been obviously focused on beef, chicken, pork." David Yeung, founder of Green Monday Group – OmniFoods' parent company – told CNN.
The market is ripe for vegan seafood for numerous reasons, including the Netflix documentary “Seaspiracy,” Yeung said.
"People really are awakening now," he said.
Meanwhile, San Francisco, California, U.S.A.-based cell-cultured seafood producer Finless Foods has introduced a new plant-based tuna analog.
“We’ve developed a delicious, versatile product that makes an ideal plant-based substitute for raw tuna,” Finless Foods CEO and Co-Founder Michael Selden said in a press release. “The feedback received from our culinary partners has been phenomenal, likening the flavor and texture to sushi-grade tuna.”
Finless Foods aims to make the tuna analog product widely available to consumers by 2022 via restaurants and food service channels.
The plant-based seafood industry is expected to grow 28 percent annually over the next decade, according to Finless Foods.
Selden and Finless Foods Co-Founder Brian Wyrwas selected plant-based tuna as Finless Food’s first foray into the sector because “global tuna populations have declined by 60 percent over the last 50 years,” the company said.
“Presently, one-third of tuna stocks are being fished at unsustainable levels, and tuna cannot be successfully farmed at scale. With the demand for tuna ever-increasing, the need is greater than ever to source sustainably, supporting healthy, wild populations for generations to come,” Finless said.
The plant-based tuna analog offers an option for consumers who can’t eat seafood because of allergies, who think about other health concerns, or who just want to enjoy a seafood dish without the catch, Selden said.
Photo courtesy of Finless Foods