Revo Foods Is Bringing 3D Printing To The Global Plant-Based Fish Arena
The Austrian company Revo Foods is bringing plant-based, high-quality fish cuts to the global market using their specialized, upscaled 3D printing technology. After the “Food Printing Revolution” of RedefineMeat’s ‘Alt-Steak’, Revo is looking to solve the environmental issue of overfishing.
After the successful launch of 3D-printed vegan ‘Alt-Steak’ by RedefineMeat, the plant-based market is now tackling a new product: the Austrian startup Revo Foods is producing plant-based Revo™ Salmon as well as sheets of smoked salmon, salmon fillets, and sushi cuts that are “free of heavy metals and toxic waste” with the magic of 3D printing.
After RedefineMeat started the “Food Printing Revolution” developing the print technology to create the first-ever 3D-printed vegan steak, replicating the texture, flavour and appearance of real meat using a mixture of soy and pea proteins, coconut fat and sunflower oil, along with natural colours and flavours, Revo Foods is now bringing 3D printing technology into the “plant-based fish arena”. Inspired by cell-cultured meat startups who have already been able to create structurally advanced and sophisticated cuts of meat portraying complex fat and tissue structures, the company saw an opportunity to achieve the same quality for fish as well. Plant-based fish items had been seen in supermarkets before but had always been limited to fried and formed products with no significant resemblance to “the real thing”. With their 3D-printed products, they are hoping to not only supply an alternative to vegans but also win over non-vegan seafood lovers.
For Revo Foods, their product is not only an opportunity to profit from the lack of supply in a growing vegan and plant-based market, it’s a philosophy. Salmon was selected as a flagship offering because of its popularity as well as its significance of salmon agriculture regarding a wide range of environmental concerns. That’s why they do not only inform readers about their product but also use their corporate blog to address global environmental issues like overfishing.
“Since overfishing is a global problem that affects saltwater and freshwater fish, what can we do about it? Many people have chosen to reduce or even eliminate seafood from their diets to lower the demand for it. This is of course a personal choice. Others find it hard to cut down a type of food that was once a big part of their diet. What could they order at their friend’s dinner party at a fish restaurant, for example? Thankfully, many revolutionary products have since emerged.”
– Could the Oceans Ever Run Out of Fish? New Overfishing Statistics
They claim that their 3D-printed seafood is “nutritious, delicious, healthy, sustainable, vegan-friendly” and therefore a great option for everyone. Like their meat-producing counterparts, they opted for pea protein as their 3D printing material, which doesn’t only allow for the creation of an authentic seafood taste but also being a great source of Omega-3 fatty acids, vitamins D and B12 as well as being soy- and allergen-free. In addition to their salmon offerings, they have also created different tuna products and are looking to expand their assortment of products to other species in the future. A line of fish spreads is planned to launch in early 2022 as well.
“3D printing is our core technology here at Revo because it gives us the possibility to produce precise structures,” says company CSO Theresa Rothenbücher in an interview with The Spoon. It allows for them to mimic the authentic layers of orange muscle and white connective tissue seen in the usual high-quality cut of salmon filets. As their product is chalking up positive results in local restaurant product tests in Vienna, they are now looking to optimize their production process, getting ready to scale up. To achieve this next goal in their corporate development, they are aiming to both speed up the 3D printing processes and have started experimenting with techniques complementing their 3D printing technology. Rothenbücher’s vision is “a production-scale facility that houses interconnected 3D printers of varying sizes” with an automated conveyor belt system running through the facility. To not scare off consumers with the idea of a fully automated, high-tech production facility, Revo has produced animated videos to raise customer acceptance and general understanding of their philosophy, process and production technology by introducing their 3D printing technology. In addition to that, they also brought their printers to meet consumers in person, breaching the gap and overcoming biases towards this futuristic food production:
“We usually bring one of our R&D printers to events, and then show people how the food material is transformed into the salmon products. Usually, they really like it and are fascinated with it, and if they can directly taste it, it’s even better. Of course, it is not a traditional way of producing food. But then, we are a new generation,”
says CSO Theresa Rothenbücher. She is convinced that the technology her company has created to form realistic cuts of fish with specialized and upscaled 3D printing technology is going to lead to opportunities for collaborations with cell-based companies or even manufacturing hybrid products in the future, opening up their plant-based, environmentally conscious offerings to an even wider audience.
Which products would you be interested in seeing high-quality plant-based options for? Which food sector do you think 3D printing is going to conquer next? Let us know in the comments or start a discussion on Facebook, Twitter or LinkedIn!
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