Encouraging dietary shifts with convincing meat substitutes
Flavio, Global Business Development Manager for Protein at Givaudan has a dream: he wants to help create a piece of meat that is made entirely out of vegetable products but indistinguishable from the real thing in every element of how consumers experience it. Flavour, texture, colour, how it cooks – everything.
He is motivated by consumers who, with dietary approaches including vegetarianism, veganism and flexitarianism, want to completely eliminate or reduce the amount of meat they eat.
They are motivated by ethical concerns regarding the ways animals are treated, concern for the environment as well as concerns for their health: they are looking to reduce their consumption of saturated fat while still getting the protein they need.
Furthermore, leading-edge researchers in the fields of food, nutrition and environment recommend that we eat a more plant-based diet because it is one of the main ways in which we can reduce our greenhouse gas emissions.
Still, many people are unable to fully commit or wind up going back to meat. Thanks to Plant Attitude - the programme around our plant protein capabilities - we know that taste and experience play a big role.
> Read more about Plant Attitude
Flavio and Givaudan are getting closer to the goal with the further development of our portfolio of products. A patent for flavour modifiers for meat substitute products was among those we published in 2018 and we developed the know-how and technology to produce a really good chicken-like texture as well as the capacity to flavour it. “We clearly need to provide our customer with the right flavour, but we are going to need to provide the right container as well,” he said.
Givaudan also developed and launched a product that is the culmination of three years of research into the characteristics of vegetable protein and the difference between that and animal proteins. Understanding the gap between them, we created a meat protein enhancer flavour that addresses the taste aspect of this difference.