New protein source passes the taste test in Qld

Cosmos Magazine


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By Cosmos

A meat based protein powder tested at Beef24 this week in Rockhampton, Queensland, has surprised delegates, according to one of the human taste-testers.

Kevin Norman, from Austrade, the Australian Government’s international trade promotion, investment and visitor attraction agency, visited the expo alongside delegations from China, Vietnam and Indonesia and visitors from the US and South America.

CSIRO demonstrated its new protein powder, turning less useful cuts from the beef carcass into something usable and exportable.

It created balls, something like rumballs, and offered a taste. “It didn’t taste like I expected, but it looks great, and the mouth flavour and texture was a real sensation,” says Norman.

“I couldn’t detect any meat flavour at all.”

The “Just Meat” protein powder can be used in products that have mostly remained elusive to the meat sector, including protein shakes, smoothies, energy drinks, and snacks. CSIRO says it could also be sold in powder form, like a whey or rice protein, that consumers can use to add to their smoothies or dishes at home.

Dr Aarti Tobin, animal protein lead for CSIRO’s Future Protein Mission, says the powder’s nutritional and allergen-free profile sets it apart from other protein powders on the market.

Why protein matters

“The advantage of a meat-based protein is that it naturally contains all essential amino acids, as well as high iron, zinc and magnesium,” Tobin says.

“It’s mild in flavour and highly soluble so we’ve easily added it to snacks like sweet protein balls in our product development kitchen, with promising results to take to product trials.

“We’re looking at new protein products to meet changing consumer preferences and which will play a big role in feeding a growing world population that’s set to reach 9.7 billion by 2050.”

Norman, who has a background in the food industry, says innovations like this powder “…could help the world face the oncoming protein drought, particularly in Asia, both north and south.”

CSIRO says the protein powder supports food security by delivering meat’s nutritional benefits to remote locations or in disaster relief, by overcoming refrigeration and transportation hurdles.

Meat and Livestock Australia Group Manager Science and Innovation, Michael Lee says the product’s versatility demonstrated its potential to capitalise on market demand for red meat globally.

“There is a growing global demand for convenient and nutritious food as the world’s population increases,” Lee says.

“Products like this meat protein powder provide a shelf-stable, easily transportable and versatile source of protein.

“By converting meat into essentially a food ingredient this also creates another revenue stream for the industry beyond our traditional meat trading options.”

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