Plant-based, whole-cut salmon to arrive in 202431 Jan 2022
Plantish revealed its prototype for plant-based, whole-cut salmon earlier this month when it came out of stealth mode. The Israeli-based startup said while its prototype will be available at popups for attendees to taste beginning this year, its salmon filets will not officially launch on the market until 2024.
After only existing for six months, Plantish has already made waves in the plant-based protein category. Last year, the startup netted $2 million from TechAviv Founder Partners, a venture fund backed by top industry veterans, investors and philanthropists. While this seed funding was granted at a conference in Israel, it is clear that the company has scale at the top of mind as it says it is looking to make a splash globally.
"Our vision is to be the world's leading seafood brand," Co-Founder and CEO Ofek Ron said in a statement. "All without hurting a single fish."
Although salmon is widely consumed — particularly in the U.S. where Americans consume about 450,000 pounds of it annually — there are not a significant number of plant-based options available, and the majority of those on the market are ground fish products. Currently, plant-based fish that is shaped into patties or other products is the most economical method of creating seafood without the sea animals. Plantish is hoping to change this through its “low-cost and high-scale” additive manufacturing production process also known as 3D printing.
If the company is successful at scaling with this manufacturing method, this patent-pending technology could change the tide in the plant-based seafood category since about 80% of conventional fish is consumed whole-cut, according to data from the market research firm IMARC Group cited by Plantish.
However, manufacturing entire fish filets that can be prepared in the same way as conventional salmon is not the only change that Plantish is hoping to bring to the seafood industry. In a release, the company claims its salmon “has the same nutritional value as conventional salmon and is high in protein, Omega-3s, Omega-6s, and B vitamins.” If the taste of its product is similarly on par with traditional salmon, the company is likely to gain quick attention.
Plantish is entering a category with plenty of room for growth. Alternative seafood represented only 0.1% of all of the seafood category’s retail dollar sales in 2020, according to a study from The Good Food Institute. It is also a space that is gaining recognition and popularity.
Good Catch is a major competitor that is producing vegan seafood products, and it recently launched a new plant-based salmon burger. One other company working towards a plant-based salmon fillet is Revo Foods, which is based in Austria and is using bioprinting technology for some of its alternative products, including salmon filets. If Plantish can jump into the fray with filets that achieve the same mouthfeel, texture and taste as animal salmon, it has a good chance of swimming.
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