These 3 Companies Are Creating Healthy Fat Alternatives From Mushrooms – vegconomist

These 3 Companies Are Creating Healthy Fat Alternatives From Mushrooms – vegconomist

Today, we look into three companies using mushrooms to create healthy fats for plant-based foods.

Interest in mushrooms continues to grow among consumers and manufacturers since these wonders of nature, neither plants nor animals, offer exceptional functionality, encompassing supplements, textiles, meat alternatives, beverages, colorings, and now fats. 

Some mushrooms have a high lipid content, composed of unsaturated fatty acids, that can be used to replace vegetable and saturated fats. According to Brazilian researchers, edible mushrooms worldwide contain linoleic, linolenic, and oleic acids (some more than others), making them an important essential fatty acid source for a healthy diet. 

The global mushroom market is expected to reach $115.8 billion by 2030, and mushrooms were named Ingredient of the Year by The New York Times in 2022.

1. Scelta Mushrooms

A spoon of a fat made using mushrooms
© Scelta Mushrooms

Scelta Mushrooms, a Dutch company with 30 years of experience in the mushroom industry, has developed Fungible, a fat-replacer made with Dutch mushrooms that mimics animal fat. According to the company, Fungible helps to significantly reduce the fat content in alternative food products without compromising texture and taste. It is said to contain 85% less fat compared to animal and most vegetable fats. It offers fewer calories while it improves the Nutri-Score rating of products. 

Scelta Mushrooms supplies mushrooms to leading brands in the food industry, food service, and retail across more than 70 countries.

2. The Mushroom Meat Co.

The Mushroom Meat Co. is a B2B company from California harnessing the natural properties of mushrooms, whole plants, and cold-pressed fruit oils to make alternatives to beef and pork. 

A plant-based burger patty
© The Mushroom Meat Co.

To deliver the juicy, fatty mouthfeel that people crave in meat while offering a healthy product, The Mushroom Meat Co. has created a low-fat alternative to beef fat using mushrooms. According to Kesha Stickland, the founder and CEO of the innovative company, the mushroom fat not only mimics the behavior of beef fat but also contributes to the Maillard Reaction as well as crust formation.

The product sizzles and melts when heated, providing the ultimate sensory experience for consumers. It can be ground, chopped, or added to products to simulate fat marbling because it has a solid and flexible form at room temperature. Moreover, the fat has a “tunable” melting point, allowing multiple applications beyond burger patties.

The Mushroom Meat Co. products won the “Best Meat Alternative” award at Plant Based World Expo in 2022. The company’s meat comes raw and unseasoned and is gluten and soy-free, vegan, paleo-friendly, and free of the top ten allergens.

Mycorena's clean-label fungi-based fat is commercially available
© Mycorena

3. Mycorena

Swedish food tech company Mycorena has developed what it claims is the world’s first” fungi-based fat to offer a low-fat alternative to animal and vegetable fats. Branded Mycolein is said to mimic animal fat, adding juiciness and enhancing flavors of meat alternatives.

Moreover, it contains fiber, 40% less fat than other oils, and 85% less saturated fat than coconut oil. These features improve the Nutri-Score rating of animal and plant-based products. Last April, Mycorena announced the fat’s launch after successfully developing a full-scale process.

“The potential applications of this technology are limitless. While we initially focused on enhancing food products through fat solutions, this is only the beginning. Our ultimate goal is to leverage this technology to unlock new, sustainable solutions for food manufacturing,” said Sandra Zachrisson, head of product innovation at Mycorena.