CHICAGO, Ill. – March 21, 2023 – Food tech startup Aqua Cultured Foods today announced it will begin consumer tastings of its seafood alternatives at its Chicago facility in advance of launching publicly through chef partners and foodservice distributors.
Aqua will offer participants Aqua tuna rolls, shrimp dumplings and scallop crudo to solicit feedback. Tastings will be held in Aqua’s West Loop, Chicago headquarters beginning in early April.
Aqua is developing a range of alt-seafood from proprietary mycoprotein fermentation processes. A unique strain of fungi transforms plant-based ingredients into “seafood” with a realistic taste, texture, and appearance that can be used as a one-to-one replacement for animal seafood. The company is also producing minced fillings for applications such as dumplings, ravioli, and sushi rolls.
“Public tasting events will help us fine-tune products and learn what preparations are most successful, which will also help us create new menu items with chef and restaurant partners,” said Aqua CEO Anne Palermo. “Participants should arrive hungry and prepare to be wowed, because they’ve never had plant-based seafood that’s this delicious and this convincing.”
Those interested in joining a tasting panel can sign up at https://www.eventbrite.com/e/aqua-customer-taste-panels-tickets-565576212677?aff=Newsletter.
Aqua’s calamari, shrimp, scallops, and filets of tuna and whitefish are created using fermentation processes that do not use any animal inputs, genetic altering or modification. Unlike plant-based processed foods formulated with starches and protein isolates, Aqua’s alt-seafood retains its naturally occurring fiber, protein, and other micronutrients.
The rising demand for seafood has led to depleted fish populations, ecosystem damage, plastic waste, and unintended “bycatch” of non-target species due to commercial fishing. As fish farming increases, so does habitat destruction, pollution and diseases in wild fish populations, and the industry’s reliance on antibiotics and wild-caught fish for feed.
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About Aqua Cultured Foods
Aqua Cultured Foods is an innovative food technology startup developing the world’s first whole-muscle cut seafood alternatives created through microbial fermentation. Its novel technology produces a sustainable, complete protein source using only a fraction of the resources required by traditional aquaculture. As the first to develop realistic alt-seafood with fermentation, Aqua Cultured Foods occupies a unique position in the burgeoning alt-seafood market, as well as within the fermentation industry. The company’s mission is to mitigate global challenges such as overfishing, climate change and feeding the world’s expanding population with delicious, nutrient-rich foods. For more information visit https://www.aquaculturedfoods.com.