Roquette opens world’s largest pea protein plant to meet rising demand for plant-based ingredients

CANADA –  Global leader in plant-based ingredients, Roquette has opened what it claims is the world’s largest pea protein plant, to meet surging demand for plant-based ingredients.  

The new 200,000-square-foot plant in Manitoba, Canada, marks Roquette’s biggest North American investment to date. 

The new pea protein plant is situated in Portage la Prairie, just outside Winnipeg, in a region, the company says “produces more peas than any other in the world”. 

It has the capacity to process 125,000 tons of yellow peas each year, bringing Roquette’s total processing capacity to 250,000 tons of peas every year.  

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Roquette works with food companies to develop new plant-based products and solutions and is aiming to help meet ‘surging’ global demand for alternative proteins with its new facility. 

Demand for pea protein has been booming with multiple industry estimates expecting an annual global growth rate of between 15 and 24% over the next decade, reports Roquette. 

The company’s Nutralys pea protein can be used to make a range of food products, including meat alternatives, nutrition bars, and plant-based biscuits and beverages. 

In food preparations, toasted yellow pea protein can replace the toasted rice powder used in Thai spring rolls for additional protein benefits. 

Pea protein flour can also be used to substitute regular flour in codfish breading. Similarly, in desserts, a standard fruit crisp topping can be elevated by replacing its flour with yellow peas. 

“We see this as a transformational event in our history and a boost to the global plant-based food sector,” said Pierre Courduroux, CEO of Roquette. 

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“Diets have changed considerably in recent years, and the desire for alternative proteins continues to grow. Our company is proud to bring this amazing new facility online to serve demand in North America and around the world.” 

Jeremy Burks, senior vice president of plant proteins at Roquette, added: “The pandemic has led to stronger consumer demand for plant-based proteins while also disrupting global supply chains. This plant will help our customers move forward rapidly on product development.” 

With this new facility, Roquette has largely exceeded the half a billion euros investment in plant proteins it had targeted in the period 2015 to 2020.  

This includes equity investments, acquisitions, upgrades to its pea protein processing facility in Vic-sur-Aisne, France. 

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