Novel Technology to Transform Liquid Oils into Solid Fats Developed

Thursday, September 26, 2019

Barcelona-based start-up Cubiq Foods has developed a mechanical process it claims can convert liquid oils from sunflower to olive oil into solid or semi-solid structured fats that can improve juiciness and reduce saturated fat levels in plant-based burgers, without using hydrogenation  or interesterification, reports the FoodNavigator-USA on September 19.  

Currently, most plant-based burger brands use coconut oil, which is high in saturated fat, because they need a solid fat to make the burgers on an industrial scale.  However, some of the fat and moisture can be lost during the cooking process.  

Cubiq’s process involves the addition of water (up to 40%) and some clean label food grade additives, some of which according to CEO Andres Montefeltro, were already on food labels in plant-based or regular processed meat products.  The fat is then put through a ‘mechanical process’ which the company is not outlining in detail at this stage as it is exploring patents.  The resulting ‘smart fat’ is solid, with exciting functional properties, that is lower in both saturated fat and total fat (owing to the addition of water) than current solid fats used in plant-based meats and other products requiring solid fats.

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