Processing technology blends bones into chicken nuggets

Harnessing the nutritional benefits of bones could improve the efficiency and sustainability of poultry processing for products such as chicken nuggets.

“This allows the processor to buy less chicken while getting more product,” explained Santtu Vekkeli, CEO and founder, SuperGround.

The poultry processing technology can increase the production value for poultry-based products up to 30% compared to other methods, without the need for major investments or equipment changes, according to the company’s website.

How the processing technology works

The process involves an extrusion method that enables the use of all poultry bones in a safe and non-visible way that targets and kills any Salmonella present in the bone marrow. The closed-loop process can result in zero loss of raw materials, which reduces food waste.

“The bone is diluted through a heat treatment where it becomes soft. It then goes through a second and third processing where it practically disappears,” Vekkeli said. “It’s actually a pretty simple process.”

The nutritional value of poultry bones

Poultry bones are high in calcium, so adding them to chicken nuggets could help boost the nutritional profile of these products. “The concept of eating bones is not new at all,” said Vekelli, noting that the practice is well-accepted in many cultures throughout the world.

“Nobody’s really offering them, but that’s why our plan is to use it together with chicken and a small amount of plant materials in products that already exist,” he added.

Vekkeli acknowledged that consumer acceptance could be a challenge but ultimately believes that the resulting product aligns with the consumer value of sustainability.

Consumers, led by Gen Z and millennials, are becoming increasingly thoughtful about what they consume. This means that values like sustainability now play a larger role in purchasing decisions and could continue to impact product sales going forward.

In addition, in a recent taste test, more than half of the participants said chicken nuggets made with the processing technology tasted better than traditional nuggets with no detectable change in the mouth feel of the finished product.

Par : Elizabeth Doughman (23/05/2022)

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Photo : SuperGround (tirée de l'article original)