Rotterdam, Netherlands – Dutch plant-based ingredients pioneer Fooditive will begin large-scale production trials of the world’s first 100 per cent bee-free honey in the New Year.
By mass-producing a bio-identical honey that eliminates the need to intensively farm honeybees, Fooditive aims to create a scalable, provenanced supply. As well as providing all the benefits of traditional honey, this will address consumer concerns about animal welfare and sustainability, the company said in a press release.
Using the same patented biotech process already used to create Fooditive’s revolutionary vegan casein, which was launched last year, honey DNA is copied into a proprietary strain of yeast. When fed with nutrients and precision-fermented to replicate the metabolic processes that occur in the honeybee stomach, this yields a product with the same characteristics and functionality of bee-produced honey – from taste, colour and viscosity to its health benefits.
The production trials will recreate the lab-proven concept in 1,000-litre fermenters, with samples to be made available for potential customers to try and test out in their own applications.
“Our goal is to provide the world’s first 100 per cent bee-free honey with no compromise on taste, quality or price,” said Moayad Abushokhedim, Fooditive founder and CEO. “We believe our process will be the stepping stone for a revolutionary advancement in the food and biotechnology industries, enabling any animal product to be mimicked and even improved by bioengineering plant-based ingredients.”
The global honey market is expected to grow at a CAGR of 5.2 per cent between 2022 and 2030 due to increased demand from consumers who want to reduce white sugar use and focus on more nutritious ingredient, according to a study by Fakhlaei et al, The Toxic Impact of Honey Adulteration: A Review. Foods. 9(11), 1538 (2020).
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