Sustainable Foods, a New Zealand-based company, is planning to launch a hemp-based burger through its Craft Meat Co. brand next year, Food Navigator-Asia reports. The Craft Meat brand already offers plant-based mince, burgers, sausages, and ready-to-eat meals which company Co-founder Kyran Rei said already include some hemp for nutritional value, but the new product will use hemp for its base.
Rei said the total consumable protein of the hemp-based product is “higher than even that of animal-based protein sources” due to the naturally occurring high levels of protein in hemp.
“Hemp-based meat will also contain very high levels of dietary fiber, up to 19 percent of the recommended dietary intake, a benefit that is not available from traditional animal meat or in many other plant-based meats.” – Rei to Food Navigator-Asia
The company is partnering with New Zealand medical cannabis producer Greenfern Industries as their exclusive hemp grower, so the products will be made with “100 percent locally grown hemp,” Rei said.
Hemp seeds were legalized as food in New Zealand in 2018 and in Australia in 2017. Rei said the company has received inquiries about the hemp-based burger from Thailand and Singapore. He said he expected the product to be in a price range “affordable” to the average consumer.
The product was created with researchers from Massey University’s Riddley Institute.