Eggs

News 9869 views 8 commentsupdate:Mar 9, 2016

Artificial eggs hit US supermarket shelves

The world may have recently been introduced to the first lab-grown burger, but the poultry sector is ahead, with plant-based egg products recently hitting US supermarket shelves.

It's no novelty either, according to founder of Hampton Creek foods Josh Tetrick, whose mission to replace eggs and other agricultural products with plant-based alternatives has won financial backing from Facebook billionaire Peter Thiel and Microsoft's Bill Gates.

"We want to create a whole new model that makes the (old egg production) system obsolete," Mr Tetrick told a TEDx lecture covering how to feed a growing population on limited resources. Producing emulsifying plant product cuts out the need for grain to be transported, fed to birds for them to then produce eggs, and thereby reduces carbon and waste, he says.

Mr Tetrick added that 92% of the world's plant species' properties were yet to be explored, and that many could replicate the taste, texture and nutritional value of meat or eggs – and combined, create equivalent products.

The artificial egg is a mixture of different plants, including canola, peas and sunflower leicithin, and its creator says producing it costs 18% less than real eggs.

Two lines – an egg-free mayonnaise and a powdered egg product for baking – are being sold initially through Wholefoods stores in the USA, but the supermarket could not confirm if it was to appear in the UK anytime soon.

The firm is also developing a scrambled egg substitute that, although not ready for commercial production, is almost indistinguishable from real eggs in both taste and texture, according to testers.

Source: Jake Davies, Farmers Weekly

World Poultry

8 comments

  • RRP Paulsen

    What nutritional value are they giving this artificial egg in comparison to the 'old egg production' standard?

  • manny atovi monarca

    artificial egg? Is there a crisis in egg supply? How efficient is the mixture and how could they perfectly copy a natural egg? Why cater something as an alternative, its just because of a cheaper price in production and not considering the effect of poultry layer business and the economy.

  • David Akinde

    no qualms and the poultry industry should say bring it on! Innovation is our key. Once we get to the 500 eggs/bird/year and further on, then we are probably able to handle such competition.........

  • H Djang

    Seriously, i hope it turns out right in terms of nutrients

  • WK Kilbourn

    Bill Gates would be happy to feed cardboard to the '3rd world' if he thought they wouldn't starve. Rather than work on improving ag, he'd rather synthesize food. Typical egghead, pardon the pun. He knows computers, but that's about all.

    This carbon frenzy is making these people a little crazy even though they still can't give solid proof of their claims. Gates, all these billionaires like playing God with their influence, but they've ALL made their billions on the carbon-heavy businesses, right?

    Nothing but hypocrites.

  • Robert Gauthier

    Until this pseudo substitute can sustain the growth of a chicken embryo, I am not in... this is BS...! Really anything to make the news!

  • K.S. Arora

    If only same efforts and money could have been utilized to create artificial blood or cornea!!!!!!

  • O.O olumide

    why create alternative for a seemingly abundant product?

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