What a difference a year makes. It was in spring 2021 that Planteneers created a new category with plant-based alternatives to fish and seafood.
“The category didn’t exist before that. The enormous technological leap we made in the development of fish alternatives was a real breakthrough,” notes Dr. Dorotea Pein, director product management at Planteneers. “The current demand confirms the importance of these plant-based products.”
Dr. Pein adds that plant-based fish and seafood alternatives were particularly popular at Plant Based World, a new industry exhibition held last December in New York City.
With its expanded range, Planteneers is delivering answers for the rising demand. Among its new products are plant-based calamari and shrimp. What makes these special is that both foods can be produced using the same system—with individual product variants made by adjusting the form and color. For example, a color mixture based on paprika extract gives the plant-based shrimp their typical light red shade.
Production also is very straightforward. The mass is first made in a standard cutter as used in the meat industry. Ideally it should have a vacuum function, in order to get a compact, homogeneous mass. This can then be given the desired shape with a standard molding machine. Thus, without much expense and without investment in new equipment, it is possible to produce plant-based seafood alternatives that can be used in many ways.
Just like regular calamari and shrimp, they can be used for cold foods such as salads and antipasti; or for hot dishes, deep-fried, pan-fried or grilled offerings. These shrimp and calamari can be prepared breaded or unbreaded. Since they are freeze-thaw-stable, they are also great for deep frozen foods.
Planteneers’ fish and seafood portfolio includes plant-based alternatives to fried fish and sushi-quality fillet, canned tuna and even smoked varieties such as smoked salmon. Like the existing range, the new products are intended for manufacturers in the meat industry, fish producers in the convenience category, and companies specializing in making plant-based alternatives.
Planteneers GmbH, headquartered in Ahrensburg, Germany, develops and produces custom system solutions for plant-based alternatives to meat, sausage and fish products, as well as cheese, dairy products and deli foods. As a member of the independent, owner-operated Stern-Wywiol Gruppe with a total of 12 sister companies, Planteneers can make use of many synergies. The company has access to the knowledge of some 100 R&D specialists and to the extensive applications technology of the large Stern-Technology Center in Ahrensburg.
As part of the Technology Center, the Plant Based Competence Center formed in 2019 is the creative pool for alternative solutions and the heart of Planteneers. Customers also benefit from the Group’s international network of 17 subsidiaries and numerous qualified foreign representatives in the world's key markets, as well as the Group’s shared production facilities and own logistics resources. With revenues exceeding 530 million euros and some 1,700 employees around the globe, Stern-Wywiol Gruppe is one of the world's most successful international suppliers of food & feed ingredients.