Manufacturers are looking for new ways to meet consumer demands for healthier products, and this is driving an increase in adoption for next-generation, plant-based protein sources such as algae, Mark Brooks, TerraVia’s senior vice president of food ingredients, tells FoodIngredientsFirst. “Algae is one of nature’s first foods and is rich in protein, fibers, and micronutrients,” he says.
TerraVia’s AlgaVia Protein-Rich Whole Algae is unique among plant-based proteins in that it is considered a whole food—meaning it is not a processed isolate or concentrate—and it has natural encapsulation, which helps ease formulation and improve texture. “Being a whole food has resonated well with consumers because they value the multi-nutrient content,” Brooks says. AlgaVia Lipid-Rich Whole Algae Powder can serve as a replacement for dairy fats, oil, and egg yolks, helping food companies reduce fat, saturated fat, cholesterol, and calories.
While the food industry has already recognized the benefits of algae, Brooks says work needs to be done to improve consumer awareness of algae protein. “[This] will ultimately drive demand for the ingredient,” he says.