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It is estimated that more than 1.1 million tonnes of vegetable proteins are consumed in Europe each year (Frost & Sullivan). Whilst some of this is used in animal feeds and pet foods, a significant amount is used for human nutrition. Typical applications include:
Meat products: Vegetable proteins can improve texture and mouth feel, reduce unsightly cooking losses and impact on nutrition/health. Judicious use of vegetable proteins can also offer a cost-effective way of extending the meat supply.
Dairy products: Vegetable proteins offer a cost-effective way of extending the milk supply or creating dairy alternatives.
Bakery products: As well as providing nutritional characteristics, vegetable proteins can be incorporated to provide texture, moisture management and bleaching effects.
Vegetarian Products: By definition vegetable proteins are the sole source of nutritive proteins in these products. They will also impart texture, emulsification and water binding properties if required.
Infant foods: Vegetable proteins are ideal protein sources for babies, especially those found to be intolerant/allergic to cows’ milk.
Miscellaneous: Functional and nutritional characteristics of vegetable proteins mean they often have a role in confectionery, beverages, sauces, snacks, soups, health foods, sea food…………… the list is endless!