Big Mountain Foods
The Prairie Research Kitchen team has played a pivotal role in developing new products with Big Mountain Foods, an award-winning innovator of plant-based consumer packaged foods.
Big Mountain first turned to PRK in 2020 to conduct product and process validation work on a challenging new manufacturing process. We evolved into Big Mountain’s product development partner as the company began exploring ways to create a variety of plant-based products over the next two years.
PRK’s work with Big Mountain built on our research in developing value-added food platform technology using Manitoba-grown plant proteins. This work was an outgrowth of the Prairie Plant Protein Project and led us to create a variety of tofu platforms and protein extraction methods, as well as value-added applications for the co-products of tofu production.
Another key partner on this project was Prairie Fava, which served as an ingredient supplier facilitated by a Protein Industries Canada (PIC) partnership project. Much of the product development work we conducted with Prairie Fava is now being channeled into the creation of new consumer products through Big Mountain, such as a line of innovative fava-based food products, including non-allergen tofu.
Currently, most plant-based foods are made using soy, wheat, and yellow or green peas. However, as the market for plant-based proteins continues to grow, consumers are demanding a wider range of plant-based food products. The collaboration with Prairie Fava will incorporate low vicine and co-vicine (LVLCV) fava varieties into Big Mountain’s line of consumer-packaged goods and food service products. These products will fulfill the request of several leading Canadian food manufacturers and food service providers.
Big Mountain Foods will also produce fava-based products at the world’s first allergen- and soy-free tofu factory. This allergen-free tofu is superior in protein content to soy tofu, but has the same taste, colour, functionality, and texture as traditional tofu.
TAC Interactive Visits: Thanks to the Tech-Access Canada Interactive Visits program, one of our researchers was able to travel to Big Mountain’s production plant to help the company work through production challenges. Many of our clients tap into this program to engage on site with our researcher expertise and help get their products, processes and services market-ready.