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Here are five smart food companies that are on a mission to replace meat protein with plant-based protein foods that are “Good for you, the Earth and Farmers.”
The creators of Impossible Foods impossiblefoods.com started with the goal of saving meat and the earth. Given that, “using animals to make meat” takes up almost half the earth’s land, consumes a quarter of fresh water, and destroys natural ecosystems; they’ve demonstrated that using ‘plants to make meat’ requires one-quarter of the water, one-twentieth of the land, and generates only one-quarter of greenhouse gas emissions that are produced by raising cows. Their first product, the Impossible burger, debuted in 2016. Impossible burger 2.0 was introduced in 2019. It is a tasty combination of wheat and potatoes with coconut oil added to give it that burger sizzle. The magic happens with the addition of plant-based Heme, the molecule that makes blood red. Fans of the Impossible say it has the look, flavor, texture and cooks like a beef burger.
Bug lovers work at https://eatchirps.com/ and want everyone to know that eating bugs is good for us! Their chips are made using crickets which interestingly have long been recognized for their nutritional value and are consumed by 2.5 billion people worldwide. The ingredients in Chirps include stone-ground corn, beans, chia seeds, and cricket protein powder. Crickets only use one gallon of water compared to 22 gallons for a cow. They are 31 grams of protein, cows are only 22. And, crickets can be fed our leftovers which goes a long way in reducing the 60 million tons of food wasted in the US every year.
The purveyors of KNOWFoods.com use chia seeds, flax, coconuts, almonds, and egg whites as the bases for their “non-GMO, gluten-free, and low glycemic index alternatives to traditional grain-based foods.” Their bread, waffles, buns, cookies, donuts, wraps, pasta, rice and muffins (just to name a few) are wheat, dairy, peanut, soy, yeast, and preservative free, as well as nutrient dense and natural.
The creators at OceanHuggerFoods.com have a motto; “Seafood is awesome, extinction is not.” According to an article in Nature magazine, 90% of all predatory large fish (tuna) are gone. So, the OHF team started with a simple mission, to create “delicious, simple, plant-based alternatives to popular seafood proteins.” Their signature product is Ahimi, designed to be an alternative to Ahi tuna. In other words, they turn a tomato into tuna! It’s a simple process that includes removing the skin of a tomato, flavoring the thin slices with other natural ingredients and eating it on top of a small ball of rice, sushi style. Ahimi is free of mercury, PCBs, and other toxic chemicals.
The worldwide movement towards densely nutritious, earth-friendly foods has produced smartfood.org. This initiative aims to bring Smart Food into the mainstream focused on the high malnutrition, obesity and diabetes rates in third world countries. Smart Foods does not convert food to mimic meat rather it repurposes some ancient foods that are environmentally-friendly and have multiple uses like millet and sorghum. For example, Millet is high in fiber, phosphorus and folic acid which are beneficial to children as they grow. Millet also has more than twice as much iron as beef. Sorghum is abundant in magnesium, antioxidants, and phenolic compounds all of which protect against age-related degenerative diseases. To grow these grains takes less than 70% of the water used to grow rice. They grow in half the time as wheat and can survive dry conditions; often the last crop standing during a drought.
The Food-as-Medicine philosophy is based on the belief that whole food is a traditional remedy with the therapeutic power to improve and maintain one’s health. The philosophy has been around for hundreds of years.Read More