Swiss food giant Nestle has announced its first foray into the plant-based seafood sector with the launch of a plant-based replica of the widely consumed tuna, including the rich taste and flaky texture.
Announcing the launch, Nestle said it’s new vegan tuna will be sold in the company’s already existing Garden Gourmet brand in Switzerland, Food Navigator reports.
The new launch affirms the product will be in Swiss stores ahead of the global launch. The company hopes launching a cleaner alternative to mainstream dishes will tickle the consumer’s fancy in time of the pandemic.
The plant-based seafood sector in the US accounts for just 1% of the massively growing vegan food sector. Global shares of plant-based seafood are also not very significant.
Nestlé, in recent years, has been aggressively investing in the plant-based bandwagon, with brands like Awesome Burgers, Incredible Burgers, Garden Gourmet, and more. There’s even a vegan version of the company’s wildly famous health drink Milo.
According to media statements from Nestle, the eponymous ‘Vuna’ took nine months to develop at the firm’s Swiss research facility.
The product has been designed to mimic the taste and texture of real tuna and will be sold in glass jars, starting with the Swiss supermarket chilled aisles.
“We used our proprietary, patented wet extrusion technology that we use for our plant-based meat alternatives, such as our vegan bacon and plant-based burger,” a Nestle spokesperson told Food Navigator USA.
Moreover, the Vuna is also made from just six ingredients, the company flaunts – water, pea protein, wheat gluten, rapeseed oil, salt, and a blend of natural flavors.
According to the company, nutrition-wise, the Vuna will be quite alike the original fish it mimics. The Vuna has omega-3 fatty acids, and the nutritional profile is also much like the fish, lesser carbs, and richer proteins.
Nestle said the pandemic has driven sales of their plant-based products as people under quarantine are consuming more clean alternatives. The company’s Garden Gourmet range sales saw boosted demands in the first half of 2020.