Why alternative protein?
The alternative protein market is booming, and for good reason. Many consumers and investors are attracted to plant-based meat due to its more sustainable and green profile.
Some even believe it holds the ability to drastically cut greenhouse gas emissions. Other consumers are driven by its health benefits and reduced saturated fat content.
As consumers gravitate toward alternative proteins, we’re seeing a rise in new start-ups as well as traditional meat processing companies beginning to expand their capabilities and portfolio to capture some of this growth.
During this process, many companies are finding that automation and information solutions are now essential components for them to achieve their desired outcomes.
How does automation tie in?
Leading CPG manufacturers recognize the impact that automation can have on their operation – from product consistency, safety and traceability, to cost savings and the necessary flexibility to keep up with changing global consumer demands.
However, plant-based meat companies can especially benefit from automation because of the challenges that are unique to them.
A key difference between traditional meat processing and plant-based is the number of ingredients used. Plant-based meats typically require binding agents, texturizers and stabilizers to mimic the taste, texture and appearance of traditional protein.
As traditional meat processors make the jump into plant-based meats, their day-to-day responsibilities will expand to now also include ingredient procurement, storage, handling and batching.