Mycorena displays first mycoprotein butter prototype, following 6 months intense research and development work within the high-fat dairy field.
The background story
About 6 months ago Mycorena, one of the fastest growing food-tech companies in Europe, announced a break-through in fungi technology enabling the creation of a unique fungi-structured fat ingredient. As an outcome of persistent innovative research, Mycorena now unveils its next area of mycoprotein applications: high-fat dairy alternatives. This area of applications is possible through a unique patent-pending processing method developed by the company this year.
Why is this important?
The new technology has opened up a lot of prospects for product applications of hight-fat dairy alternatives and the company is currently exploring all possibilities of the technique and will soon be launching a series of new product prototypes. Mycorena expects that the new process will make it possible to create a range of sustainable, vegan alternatives to any high-fat dairy product and the first intended consumer product will be butter. The new method requires few ingredients and can even be made without additives commonly used in animal- or plant-based dairy alternatives.
“This is something our team has been trying to figure out for more than a year, with little success until recently. Usually, mycoprotein is considered a non-functional protein ingredient that needs other ingredients to create interesting food structures. We have just shown here that this is not true; you just need to work it the right way.” – Paulo Teixeira
But why butter, isn’t cheese much cooler?
The choice of exploring butter as the first application is somewhat unique since most focus within the plant-based dairy field is currently on cheese applications. So why did the company decide to initially explore butter and not cheese?
First of all, butter made out of dairy has a very high fat content where more than half of the product consist of saturated fats. The product is further high in cholesterol, thus combining two things commonly associated with cardiovascular diseases. Mycorena’s new process enables the creation of a healthier butter alternative with heavily reduced saturated fat content and no cholesterol, while at the same time enriching the product with a small amount of protein, something which is commonly lacking in plant-based oils.
Many plant-based alternatives to high-fat dairy products already exists on the market today, but their texture is limited to that of the solid fat source used in the product. The majority of available commercial products contains either palm- or coconut-oil, both associated with being unsustainable from either an environmental or social perspective. Mycorena’s new process make use of the unique properties of fungi to structure their fat-based applications, allowing them work with locally sourced fats such as oil from rapeseed.
Ok, but seriously, who will buy this?
Another reason to focus on butter alternatives is the sometimes overlooked, rapidly expanding market. The global cow’s milk butter market is projected to grow from USD 37.01 billion in 2021 to USD 49.07 billion by 2028 at a CAGR of 4.11 % during the forecasted period. This should be put in relation to the cheese market which is projected to grow from USD 123.87 billion in 2021 to USD 161.23 billion by 2028, exhibiting a lower CAGR of 3.84 % during the forecasted period*. It should also be mentioned that the main restraining factor to the butter market growth is predicted to be the increasing demand for vegan and lactose free alternatives.
If we also want to work with this, what do we do?
Mycorena is currently exploring different possibilities and collaborations for their new process, so if you are in the field of alternative high-fat dairy, get in touch and maybe we can develop the future of food together!