Quorn owner inks first mycoprotein deal with maker of ‘next gen alternatives that don’t imitate meat’

By Flora Southey

- Last updated on GMT

Marlow Ingredients and Tempty Foods unveil world first collaboration for use of Marlow mycoprotein. Image credit: Marlow Ingredients
Marlow Ingredients and Tempty Foods unveil world first collaboration for use of Marlow mycoprotein. Image credit: Marlow Ingredients

Related tags Quorn Mycoprotein

Marlow Foods’ newly set-up ingredients division is announcing its first supply deal for the same mycoprotein used in Quorn branded meat alternatives.

Last month, Quorn’s parent company Marlow Foods unveiled plans to supply mycoprotein to other food and beverage makers​ under a new business division, Marlow Ingredients.

This week, Marlow Ingredients is announcing its first supply deal has been struck: Marlow mycoprotein will be incorporated into Dutch food start-up Tempty Foods’ offerings.

“We’re delighted that Tempty Foods is the first of what we believe will be many food and beverage manufacturers to recognise the huge potential of our mycoprotein and its many sustainable and nutritional benefits,” ​said Tom Lindley, head of strategy and marketing at Marlow Ingredients.

Focus on ‘taste and nutrition, rather than meat imitation’

Tempty Foods was established by three students at the Danish Technical University Denmark (DTU) in 2021 looking to develop viable alternatives to meat and tofu.

Unlike many alternative protein players on the market, the start-up is less interested in mimicking meat in terms of taste, texture and appearance. Its solution, founded on fungi-based ingredient mycoprotein, doesn’t look or taste like meat.

Tempty Foods’ vision is to make plant-based and fungi-based food products the ‘preferred choice for everyone’.

The start-up is currently selling its Tempty offerings – available in cubes, strips, or whole pieces – into foodservice channels. By deep frying Tempty, foodservice operators can serve the product as a substitute for meat or falafel. The start-up claims its product is clean label and easy to prepare.

The collaboration with Marlow Ingredients aims to help Tempty Foods accelerate growth and expand into new channels and markets.

“The introduction of Marlow mycoprotein into our products will give us a sustainable and competitive edge,” ​said Martina Lokajova, co-founder and CEO of Tempty Foods.

“It will also empower us to continue creating next generation alternatives that focus on the key values of taste and nutrition, rather than imitating meat.”

Nutrition and sustainability benefits

From a nutrition standpoint, Marlow mycoprotein is a complete protein, containing all essential amino acids. It is also low in saturated fat and a source of vitamins and minerals. It is also high in fibre.

A recent study, partly funded by Marlow Foods and published in the European Journal of Nutrition​, also found that consuming mycoprotein increases healthy gut bacteria​ and leads to a significant reduction in intestinal genotoxins – a known cause of bowel cancer.

Both Marlow Foods and Tempty Foods suggest there are also sustainability benefits associated with selecting mycoprotein as a primary protein source. Based on a preliminary life cycle assessment, Tempty is estimated to produce 34 times less CO2 than minced beef.

According to an analysis conducted by the Carbon Trust, Marlow mycoprotein uses 90% less land and water, and produces 98% less carbon emissions than equivalent beef products.

Marlow Ingredients hopes to supply its mycoprotein to many more food and beverage companies, and in so doing, play a ‘pivotal role’ in helping to tackle climate change. Enthusiasm from other manufacturers has been ‘really high’, Marlow Foods CEO Marco Bertacca recently told FoodNavigator​.

“We have this magic ingredient, but only if we collaborate with many other companies around Europe and eventually the rest of the world, can we accelerate the development of the next level of food.”

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