Roquette to open world’s largest pea protein plant in Canada

14 Oct 2020

As the food industry continues to grapple with the fallout from COVID-19, French ingredient manufacture Roquette remains undaunted in its efforts to ramp up production of its pea protein. The company began investing in expanding its production capabilities five years ago and is scheduled to open the world’s largest pea protein plant in Portage la Prairie, Manitoba, Canada by December.

The company invested nearly €400 million ($463 million) into this new factory, and when it opens, the additional production capabilities will make Roquette the world’s largest pea protein producer. At the new Canadian facility, the company expects to process 120,000 tons of peas per year. In addition to this North American location, Roquette has another pea-processing plant in France.

Roquette to open world’s largest pea protein plant in Canada
Creative Commons License

While the company was able to maintain its original project timeline for the completion of this processing plant despite hurdles presented by the pandemic, the COVID crisis has caused other difficulties to emerge for many companies. Foodservice outlets have shuttered across the globe, which although has resulted in an uptick in retail demand for plant-based protein alternatives, has not been sufficient to offset industrial-scale losses.

Nevertheless, Jean-Philippe Azoulay, Head of Pea and New Proteins Business at Roquette has said in multiple interviews that he does not expect this trend to be a long term change in the industry. In January this year, the company signed a three-year supply agreement with the plant-based burger maker Beyond Meat, which will end in 2022.

In fact, Reuters reported Azoulay said the uptick in demand for plant-based options from consumers may accelerate the company’s plans to open a second processing facility in Canada. Reuters reported that sales of U.S. volume sales of fresh plant-based meat rose 102% in the second quarter of this year.

Grand View Research published data showing the global market for pea protein is expected to reach $385.7 million by 2027. However, despite the continued popularity of the alternative protein, which is used in alternative meat, milks and flours, the ingredient has some drawbacks. Criticism of pea protein includes its gritty texture and distinctive taste. Still, the ingredient, which is known to be sustainable, is growing at a meteoric pace that Euromonitor International cited as unsustainable last year without additional production capacity.

Roquette is stepping in to make sure that there is sufficient product for companies looking to use this alternative protein source. But the French ingredients manufacturer is not alone. ADM is working on a plant in North Dakota and Puris is partnering with Cargill to fund a production facility in Minnesota.

With competition increasing, having the title of “world’s largest” may prove to be beneficial to Roquette as it strives to stand out in the alternative protein ingredient market.

Related news

Chr. Hansen sells natural colors business unit to private equity firm

Chr. Hansen sells natural colors business unit to private equity firm

15 Oct 2020

After considering a sale for several months, Chr. Hansen sold its natural colors business to private equity firm EQT IX for EUR 800 million. The deal is expected to officially close in 2021.

Read more 
Canadian non-alcoholic beer brand raises $4 Million

Canadian non-alcoholic beer brand raises $4 Million

15 Sep 2020

Canadian non-alcoholic beer brand Partake Brewing raised $4 million in a Series A funding round led by San Francisco-based equity firm CircleUp Growth Partners. Additional participation in the round came from Export Development Canada (EDC), Natural Pr...

Read more 
French meat producers found to not abide by labeling requirements

French meat producers found to not abide by labeling requirements

15 Sep 2020

More than one-third of French meat producers are not complying with meat labeling and traceability requirements, according to an investigation by the country’s Directorate-General for Competition, Consumer Affairs and Fraud Control (DGCCRF).

Read more 
Enfamil launches infant formula containing A2 milk proteins

Enfamil launches infant formula containing A2 milk proteins

14 Sep 2020

Infant formula brand Enfamil launched a new, FDA-regulated line containing only A2 milk proteins and the omega-3 protein DHA, a key building block in brain and eye development. The A2-only dairy is sourced directly from European cows that naturally pro...

Read more 
Nestlé launches plant-based tuna alternative, Vuna

Nestlé launches plant-based tuna alternative, Vuna

7 Sep 2020

Nestlé is taking a dive into the plant-based seafood market with its new faux tuna brand Vuna. The plant-based tuna debuted in Switzerland in August under the company’s Garden Gourmet line where it is available for retail as well as sold in pre-made sa...

Read more 
New alternative protein fund raises $23 million in capital

New alternative protein fund raises $23 million in capital

2 Sep 2020

New alternative protein venture capital fund, Lever VC, announced that it has $23 million in commitments. The fund will focus on investing in early stage plant-based and cell-cultivated meat and dairy companies. The company said that it remains open to...

Read more 
Beyond Meat launches new e-commerce platform

Beyond Meat launches new e-commerce platform

27 Aug 2020

The next battleground for the plant-based protein movement is shaping up to be e-commerce. Today, Beyond Meat announced its very own online shop where consumers can order a variety of Beyond Meat products, including burgers, sausages, crumbles and brea...

Read more 
Australia’s The Product Makers create gold chocolate using sugar cane extract

Australia’s The Product Makers create gold chocolate using sugar cane extract

13 Aug 2020

Australian ingredients company The Product Makers (TPM) has gone for the gold and isolated a sugarcane extract called Saccharum officinarum to create a golden chocolate. The company says that the extract can be used as a natural colorant but also has p...

Read more 
California-based New Age Meats raises $2M in seed funding

California-based New Age Meats raises $2M in seed funding

12 Aug 2020

Cultivated meat company, New Age Meats announced that it raised $2 million in a seed extension round led by the investment firm TechU Ventures. With this supplemental money, the company plans to further expand its R&D, invest in further automation and ...

Read more 
KFC invests in the future of chicken with bioprinting

KFC invests in the future of chicken with bioprinting

11 Aug 2020

Fast food chain KFC is working to produce the world’s first lab-produced, bioprinted chicken nuggets in partnership with Moscow-based 3D Bioprinting Solutions. The restaurant said that it is working toward creating a “restaurant of the future” where th...

Read more