With the launch of Vega, a culture kit designed for optimal results across the full scope of plant bases, Chr. Hansen aims to enhance its support of plant-based innovation.
Vega is comprised of customizable starter cultures, probiotics and bioprotective strains. Chr Hansen said Vega delivers simplicity with robust performance while offering producers the flexibility to create customized and differentiated features for their products in terms of taste, texture, health and sustainability.
“We are particularly excited about this launch because it gives us the opportunity to apply our 145-year legacy of work within the dairy industry to this highly innovative and rapidly growing segment of the market. We aim to leverage our deep expertise in food fermentation and history of close collaboration with producers to help the industry elevate the art of fermented plant-based craftsmanship,” said Dr Ross Crittenden, Chr. Hansen’s senior director for commercial development.
“Because the composition of plant bases is more varied than traditional dairy products, it is particularly important to utilize cultures specifically curated to meet the performance demands of dairy-free applications. We designed the Vega Culture Kit to be simple to use while still offering the flexibility to create differentiated products that satisfy the primary consumer drivers that power this growing category.”
Chr. Hansen said the Vega Culture Kit offers producers enhanced taste and texture: a choice of starter cultures that can differentially drive flavor and texture in plant-based yogurts. This allows producers to optimize for specific product characteristics by selecting the cultures that yield the results they are after.
It can also provide probiotic support. The Vega nu-trish blends of cultures enable consumers to enjoy the benefits of the world's most-researched probiotics, including Chr. Hansen’s Bifidobacterium, BB-12 and Lactobacillus rhamnosus, LGG. These cultures have been designed specifically for use in plant bases to ensure convenient delivery of the correct serving and stability of probiotics, all while delivering robust performance and clean flavor.
The company said the Vega Culture Kit also boosts sustainability credentials. Vega FreshQ is a culture solution supporting a longer shelf life with superior freshness and fewer quality issues through the action of fermentation.
Vega customers can utilize ongoing, hands-on support from Chr. Hansen’s global team of plant-based fermentation staff and application laboratories, from ideation to post-launch troubleshooting. Chr. Hansen also invests in consumer and market research within the industry to ensure alignment between consumer needs and the features Vega cultures bring to plant-based products.
Vega cultures are produced using ingredients that are dairy-free, contain no GMO ingredients and are free of any animal-derived substances. They are suitable for use in vegetarian, vegan, Kosher and Halal products.