Revolutionary step forward in global sustainable food tech

Posted by Media Release Agency on 26th November 2020

An international company driven by a leading Australian businesswoman is on the cusp of a global revolutionary change in the food technology and packaging sector.  

Zehnder Technologies is set to launch of a sustainable range of Textured Vegetable Protein (TVP) and packaging products to tackle the world’s environmental problems. 

Led by former executive of activewear giant Lululemon Alexie O’Brien and Josef Zehnder, a former executive of Australia’s Byron Bay Cookie Company and founder of Gluten Free Bakehouse, the company is backed by Mr Zehnder’s 30-plus years of experience in food manufacturing innovation and a number of experts in the food technology and business sectors.  

The company is already producing and exporting high-quality TVP made from sunflower while it finalises its patented solution for compostable disposable packaging and is currently raising capital for the final stages of branding, legal and R&D components and expects to release the packaging range in mid 2021.

Ms O’Brien said Zehnder products will reshape both the $1.5 trillion meat market and the $85 billion fast food packaging sector.

“We are long overdue for a change to outdated meat alternatives such as soy, pea and wheat whose production models haven’t improved since the 1970s, and our technology enables this,” she said.

“Interestingly, it’s not the vegetarian or vegan market looking for new answers. Recent statistics show the majority of consumers looking for a drastic change are generation-X meat-eaters with serious concerns around health and the environment.  

“The production of soy is extremely damaging to the environment, using up large areas of land mass and water, resulting in deforestation and existing on the market as a highly refined product.

“Our TVP products are made from sunflower, are firmer and more nutritious than most already in the market and have little to no difference in taste or texture bite than regular meat foodstuffs.

“This is the first real innovation in the meat substitute market since it began and provides a better outcome for the consumer and the planet.”

The company’s TVP product has been in the European market for over six months as a white label product with production expected to reach 120 tonnes a month by early 2021. 

A FMCG brand, Botany Fields, will launched in December this year and will be distributed across retail, food service and supermarket sectors.  

Zehnder’s packaging arm, Zehnpak, is also finalising the commercialisation of its patented solution for compostable disposable packaging 

The technology aims to disrupt the global takeaway disposable packaging market, including coffee and drinking cups, cutlery, plates, and fresh food wrapping, which can be made at a lower cost in mass production than current packaging on the market.

“With an estimated 500 billion plus non-recyclable disposable packaging products choking waterways, landfill and oceans, we have a cost-effective solution to change the way waste is disposed,” Ms O’Brien said. 

“Our packaging does not utilise chemicals, plastics, trees or coatings and uses less water than recycled paper and the raw materials we use are low cost and available in industrial quantities, with standard base grade product able to hold liquid for 72 hours. 

“Best of all it breaks down and starts to decompose within a week leaving no residuals in the environment – it’s so safe you can eat it.”

The company’s TVP arm is expected to commence retail supply at scale by April with a 
European manufacturing facility already in progress and targeted for completion by June 2021.

Product development for its compostable packaging will be finalised by April with product sales expected to commence by June and a European manufacturing facility completed by September 2021.

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