Singapore start-up launches whole-plant based meat brand

Karana, a Singapore start-up, has introduced a whole-plant based meat brand with its first product – ‘pork’ made from young jackfruit. Dubbed to be delicious and sustainable, the whole-plant based ‘pork’ offers a guilt-free meat alternative that can be enjoyed without compromises.

Staking its claim as the new food-tech start-up, Karana’s healthy sustainably food is made for discerning Asian palates. At a time when food safety, security and supply chain issues are more important than ever, Karana’s solutions are designed as a new third generation meat alternative that is transparent, minimally processed, and made from whole-plants with natural meat-like qualities.

In its first phase, Karana will be launching in Singapore with six restaurants including Candlenut, Butcher Boy, Open Farm Community, Morsels, Atout, and Grain Traders.

Blair Crichton, co-founder of Karana, said: “We chose to launch in Singapore as it has such high concentration of talented chefs, and it’s a global leader in food-tech innovation. We wanted to bring to market a plant-based ingredient that cooked and presented as meat, taking jackfruit to the next level for restaurants.

“We saw a gap in the market for minimally processed plant-based alternatives that offer the right texture and are also versatile in the kitchen, so we worked with our team of experts to figure out an entirely new way of processing young jackfruit to make it more meat-like and easier to cook with, while keeping the integrity and benefits of the whole-plant.”

Karana’s first product is made of jackfruit that is sourced from smallholder farms in Sri Lanka, and transformed into a pork alternative that comes shredded or minced. The company claimed no harsh chemical and heavy processing were added, just innovative mechanical techniques that enhance the texture of the naturally meat-like ingredient.

Dan Riegler, also co-founder of Karana, has spent years working in agricultural supply chains in developing markets in South East Asia, and across a wide range of start-ups in agriculture, food-tech, and fintech.

He added: “Sustainability has never been more important, especially when it comes to food, and our first base ingredient was carefully chosen with this in mind. Jackfruit is an extremely efficient crop with high yields and low water usage, making it friendly to smallholder farmers. It is typically intercropped, promoting biodiversity. 60% of jackfruit is currently being wasted, a contributor to global warming, so with Karana we’ll be reducing that wastage, while working with farmers to support the local economy.”