Canada invests in chickpea protein alternative

As part of Canada’s AgriInnovate Program, British Columbia is investing over $1.4 million into Big Mountain Foods 2 Ltd., a plant-based food company.

iesteban | FreeImages.com
iesteban | FreeImages.com

As part of Canada’s AgriInnovate Program, British Columbia is investing over $1.4 million into Big Mountain Foods 2 Ltd., a plant-based food company.

The woman-owned company has commissioned a facility in Vancouver that is expected to produce over 2 million units annually of soy-free tofu made from Canadian-grown chickpeas. The tofu is free of common allergens in Canada and the U.S. and is higher in protein than traditional tofu, which will allow more consumers to enjoy plant-based foods. 

“Plant-based foods are growing in popularity as Canadians are increasingly looking for options to incorporate greater variety into their diets,” said the Minister of Agriculture and Agri-Food, Marie-Claude Bibeau. “Investing in businesses like Big Mountain Foods 2 is establishing Canada’s position as a global leader in this industry, while increasing consumer choice of alternative protein options.”

The AgriInnovate Program

Canada is accepting applications as part of its AgriInnovate Program which aims to accelerate the commercialization of innovative products that increase sector competitiveness and sustainability, according to the government website. To apply, visit the application guide on the Canadian government website before the deadline March 31, 2023. 

Other companies that have received funding through this program include Aspire Food Group, which processes cricket protein, and Conestoga Meats, which produces pork. 

Chickpeas 

Chickpeas, or garbanzo beans, are a popular choice for vegetarians, vegans or others looking for a non-meat protein alternative. A 1-cup serving of cooked chickpeas has 14.5 grams of protein and is also high in nutrients like fiber, manganese and vitamin B6. 

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