CPF invites startups to create meat alternatives
published : 21 Sep 2021 at 04:00
newspaper section: Business
As the popularity of plant-based meat among consumers increases, Thailand's leading food producer Charoen Pokphand Foods (CPF) has invited startups to create juicy meat-like alternatives that resemble real beef amid global competition.
The Thai food giant has partnered with the Asia-Pacific Agri-Food Innovation Summit 2021 to announce the CPF Innovation Challenge.
The competition is aimed at finding companies that can offer the best technologies to give meat alternatives a more complex taste.
Creating sustainable plant-based meat for tomorrow is also part of a greater collaboration to improve sustainability in Asia's agri-food system.
Lalana Thiranusornkij, head of innovation at CPF, said the company recognises that plant-based protein trends are growing rapidly.
Consumers have become more attracted to substitute meat products for both health and sustainable reasons.
Nevertheless, finding the right ingredients and technologies that make plant-based meat taste just as good and juicy as regular beef is challenging and complex.
They require products that resemble meat in all aspects from texture, taste, and the way it cooks to nutritional value.
Entrepreneurs who offer solutions and technologies that meet such high standards will have the chance to promote their innovation as commercial plant-based meat products while expanding their capacity into the global market.
"Participating in this challenge is an opportunity for young entrepreneurs to work with a world-class food producer like CPF. They will have the chance to be coached by our executives and co-create the menu with our experienced chefs as well as having the opportunity to do 'Proof of Concept' with CPF to upscale the production for commercial purpose," said Ms Lalana.
The committee will select three teams to present their innovations virtually to the Asia-Pacific Agri-Food Innovation Summit attendees during Nov 16-18.