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Planted launches first-of-its-kind fermented steak and ramps up production

March 12, 2024

Planted, the Swiss food-tech company known for clean label plant-based meats, has introduced the planted.steak, a fermented steak from plants, which is now available across numerous food-service outlets in Europe. The launch of planted.steak as the first product from Planted’s ‘whole-muscle platform’; which also marks the announcement of the company’s strategic expansion of its production capabilities with a cutting-edge fermentation facility in Kemptthal, Switzerland.

Planted has crafted its first plant-based steak that oozes juiciness, tenderness and a rich distinctive umami flavour, all thanks to its cutting-edge fermentation process. True to the company’s philosophy created exclusively from natural ingredients including soya protein, rapeseed oil, bean and rice flours as well as a proprietary blend of microbial cultures, the steak is testament to sustainable culinary ingenuity. With high protein and fiber, essential micronutrients vitamin B12 and iron, it also has low saturated fats.

The planted.steak is already available in Switzerland: notable restaurants across the nation such as Gartenhof, Kronenhalle, Lindenhofkeller, StudioBellerive at AMERON Bellerive au Lac, NOA Restaurant Bern, Café de Prélaz and KJU have already added the steak to their menus. In Germany, it is available at Tim Raue’s Michelin starred restaurant as well as Tim Mälzer’s Bullerei in Hamburg, while in Austria, the famous burger chain, Le Burger, is offering planted.steak.

"Our planted.steak is designed to satisfy even the most discerning palate. It’s a true game changer, not only for us but also for the whole category," said Lukas Böni, Co-founder & Member of the Executive Board of Planted. "No other plant-based steak on the market uses only natural ingredients, zero additives and displays features such as juiciness as well as tenderness. In the research and development process, we have worked with over 50 gastronomy professionals to achieve a steak that is literally unreal, in taste, texture, application and overall eating experience. We are very proud that so many restaurants have added it to their menus already."

"Fulfilling very demanding culinary requirements, the planted.steak allows us chefs to focus on what we are best at: creating and sharing emotions,”, added Peter Schärer, Executive Head Chef of famous restaurant Kronenhalle in Zürich. “The planted.steak reacts beautifully to different cooking styles, already delighting and surprising our guests.”

The planted.steak isn't just a culinary innovation; it's a scalable sustainable solution to the environmental challenges posed by traditional meat production, especially beef production. Creation of the planted.steak needs 97% less CO2e emissions per product weight compared to its animal counterpart. Beef production requires large pasture areas or agricultural land to grow feed and the production of feed for cattle requires significant amounts of energy, land, and other resources. Cattle digestion and manure release more greenhouse gases. Compared to poultry or pigs, cattle have a longer growth period before they are ready for slaughter. During this time, they consume feed and continuously produce methane. In terms of water footprint, planted.steak requires 81% less freshwater than an animal counterpart.

By significantly reducing CO2e emissions and freshwater consumption, Planted meats are paving the way for a more sustainable future without compromising on taste, quality or eating experience.

Fermentation is one of nature's most versatile processes with an unparalleled ability to boost and tailor taste, tenderness and wholesomeness of foods. Using fermentation technology allows Planted to continue to strive for clean label and healthy protein sources while doubling down on taste and naturalness - pushing the boundaries of alternative protein.

In early 2023, the Swiss Innovation Agency Innosuisse acknowledged this and awarded Planted CHF2 million as part of the Swiss Accelerator Program, aiming to accelerate the development of its whole-muscle platform. This has enabled Planted to launch its fermentation-based steak only a year later with plans for launches across DTC channels as well as in retailers across Europe in 2024.

Planted aims to create as many different product concepts as possible from its whole-muscle platform, where the muscle grows through proprietary fermentation processes. The whole-muscle is comparable to a full loin, allowing unparalleled versatility and seamless adoption into existing meat processing. This allows Planted to launch new and differentiated meats, while allowing adaptations to local food favourites and taste.

In tandem with the launch of the planted.steak, Planted unveils the strategic expansion of its production capabilities with a cutting-edge fermentation facility in Kemptthal, Switzerland. The new production site has created 30 technical and operational jobs.

"This investment in our expansion stems from a strategic decision to enhance our biotechnology footprint in Kemptthal – from labs to production," added Boni. "Our aim is to introduce innovative products from our fermentation platform to the market fast, particularly our planted.steak, which utilises the most advanced and disruptive fermentation technology today in terms of scalability, taste and product quality. We are proud to be one of the few innovators of plant-based meat that takes on all steps in the production process, from R&D to industrial production. The additional and new production site allows Planted a very fast turnaround from pilot stage to industrial production, significantly closing the time gap to market launch.”

Green technology played a central role in the construction of the new production site. The entire building, shared by various food-tech companies, has an eco-friendly energy system. This system uses the ambient air as an energy source. The air feeds the heat pumps, which provide environmentally friendly heating and cooling in the buildings. According to EKZ, over a period of 30 years, this will save more than 44,000 tons of CO2.

If you have any questions or would like to get in touch with us, please email info@futureofproteinproduction.com

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