Over the last few years, fava beans have gained popularity among food and drink manufacturers as a promising plant source of protein and amino acids. The legume naturally releases nitrogen to the soil and is well-adapted to different climates, making it a versatile plant to grow in colder regions. If processed correctly, fava can deliver neutral taste and smell, making it an appealing ingredient in the food industry.
Now, the world’s largest food and beverage company has included fava beans in its latest plant-based dairy alternative product to launch in the US.
Nestlé’s Natural Bliss brand of dairy and plant-based products has a new addition – an oat milk bolstered by the inclusion of fava protein to deliver 5g of protein. This is at least twice as much as what competitor products, such as Oatly (1.1g) or Danone-made Alpro Oat (0.3g), offer.
“Fava beans are a great source of protein, which is why we are exploring their use in different types of plant-based alternatives,” said Christoph Bolten, head of the Nestlé Institute of Food Sciences. “While developing the product, we selected the fava bean variety, that would bring the most complete nutritional elements to the recipe."
In addition to 5g of protein per serving, Nestlé’s new alt dairy drink offers all essential amino acids needed in a diet. The flavor has been described as mild and nutty, with smooth texture.
“We know our consumers seek products that are both delicious and nutritious, and this offering delivers with a first-to-market blend of oat and fava bean protein that offers more protein than the leading oat milk brand, less sugar than dairy milk, and can be enjoyed in several ways, at any time of day,” added Daniel Jhung, president of Beverage at Nestlé USA. “As interest in plant-based beverages continues to rise, we're thrilled to expand our natural bliss portfolio beyond the creamer aisle to introduce our first-ever ready-to-drink Oat Milk.”
Available in Original and Unsweetened varieties – with the latter containing 1g of sugar per serving vs 6g for the Original – the plant-based milk will launch in 64oz cartons (1.89l) will launch nationally in grocery stores and mass retailers in the US.