The eco-friendly hemp-food category has some innovative new arrivals.
On the back of changing laws, and due to its status as one of the most nutritious whole food products in the world, hemp as a functional food ingredient is already a rising star.
But ingredients made from ‘hemp heart’ (shelled seed) are growing in popularity to bump up the nutritional and plant-based credentials of snacks and drinks because they are even more neutral in both colour and flavour.
A pioneer in the hemp heart space is US company Victory Hemp Foods which has recently launched two new products, a hemp heart protein and a hemp heart oil which promise to bring the health halo of hemp to a far greater range of food and beverage products.
"As the agriculture industry tries to answer the question of how it will feed the world’s growing population...our innovation allows hemp to participate in that solution."
Victory’s Hemp Heart Protein has a ratio of 70% protein, 25% fibre, and 5% fat (high in Omega-3 polyunsaturated fatty acids), making it well suited for use in emerging food categories like dairy and meat alternatives, nutritional drink powders, and protein bars.
Victory’s Hemp Heart Oil also has strong health credentials with its ratio of Omega 6 to Omega 3 fatty acids of 3:1, and is also suited for use in a range of products including ice cream, skincare and CBD oil products.
Chad Rosen, Victory Hemp founder and CEO, says the company spent three years developing “a unique process to unlock the value of the amazing proteins and oils found in the hemp seed”.
“As the agriculture industry tries to answer the question of how it will feed the world’s growing population in a way that benefits soil, water, and air as well as the health of our planet’s inhabitants, our innovation allows hemp to participate in that solution,” Rosen says.
Product innovation is strong in the hemp category, and earlier this year, Victory Hemp was named World Champion at the inaugural Hemp Innovation Challenge at the World Ag Expo in Tulare, California thanks to its hemp heart innovations.
As a crop, hemp is considered to be sustainable and eco-friendly as it needs less water and fewer pesticides than many other crops, is also good for the soil and is non-GMO.
Victory Hemp Foods’ hemp concentrates and isolates aim to offer food and beverage manufacturers taste and performance advantages. To this end, the company uses in-house technology to enhance the characteristics of the hemp seed through non-GMO breeding programs and minimal processing steps. To remove the hulls, the hemp seeds are cracked and then mechanically separated from the white “heart” inside. This “heart” or “nut” is the stored energy to feed a new sprouting hemp plant. The oil is cold pressed using a mechanical screw press that forces the oil out of the whole seed. During cold pressing, the oil exits one side of the press and the seed solids exit from the other side of the press. This is then ground and sifted into 50% or more protein hemp.
Is it ready to roll?
The company is currently accepting orders from industry for its Hemp Heart Protein and Hemp Heart Oil.
Who funds it?
CEO Chad Rosen, a graduate of the Village Capital Agricultural Accelerator, founded Victory Hemp in 2014.