KH Roberts partners Leistritz to advance plant-based foods innovations in SEA

KH Roberts, a creator and provider of aromas and tastes, and Leistritz, a supplier of extrusion innovation for pharmaceutical and food processing, have entered a partnership to advance the research and development of plant-based foods specifically for Asian consumer needs. The partnership amalgamates expertise and knowledge from both companies, and offers support to their growing customer base in the region.

Dr Peter K.C. Ong, CEO for KH Roberts, said: “We bring together KH Roberts’ expertise in aromas and tastes with Leistritz’s expertise in process engineering in this second pilot scale extruder located in KH Roberts. We have been operating the first pilot scale extruder jointly with a local Singapore university since October last year for academic research and educational training on plant-based foods.

“Innovating future foods and tastes is at the heart of what we do, and we recognise the value of open collaboration with fellow industry leaders and promising food start-ups to achieve this. Through our new partnership with Leistritz, KH Roberts is able to further expand and develop its flavour and masking solutions in plant-based foods.”

As part of KH Roberts’ industry-academic collaborations, the pilot scale twin screw extruder for plant-based foods was commissioned last September. The extruder is key to producing new innovative alternative protein foods with authentic meat-like textures to meet the latest consumer demands. Supported by KH Roberts’ expertise in aromas and tastes, the first pilot scale extruder has been instrumental in advancing academic research and teaching purposes with the objective of equipping future food technologists with the knowledge and skill sets of plant-based food technology.

Alf Hofstetter, general manager, extrusion, Leistritz Singapore, added: “These two pilot scale extruders are amongst the first to be commissioned and operational in Singapore and South East Asia. This joint development with KH Roberts allows us to further enhance our food processing and engineering expertise outside of Europe, and jointly support the fast-developing alternative protein market in South East Asia.”

The collaboration between KH Roberts and Leistritz highlights a mutual recognition of the growing importance of flavours and advanced food processing in the emerging plant-based foods market. The collaboration will enable KH Roberts to strengthen its position at the forefront of taste innovation, and develop open collaboration opportunities with global food innovators and start-ups.