Plant-based eggs have joined the rising trend of alternative proteins and have been welcomed by vegans, climate enthusiasts, and health-conscious people. Although, according to the International Egg Commission, the demand for eggs would rise by about 20% by the year 2030. Yet, there is a multitude of health concerns circling the consumption of eggs. Concerns regarding consumption of eggs include egg allergies, salmonella outbreaks, high amount of cholesterol, etc. Genetically modified eggs and the significant amount of greenhouse gas emissions surrounding egg production have led to skepticism among egg consumers. In response to these critical issues manufacturers and producers have reviewed their production system and have introduced organic eggs, free-range eggs, and with alteration of the nutritional properties the omega-3 eggs and the low cholesterol eggs.
In addition to the regulation of the production and nutrition methodology of conventional eggs, manufacturers are also exploring ways to create plant-based eggs as a substitute for eggs. Plant-based eggs can be used as an excellent alternative to traditional eggs that are not produced from hens or other birds, but with the use of raw materials or ingredients that originate from plants, such as, for example, pulses or legumes, cereals, or algae, which can to imitate similar functionalities to eggs, such as emulsification, stabilization, gelation, protein content, whip ability, etc.
To curb the growing demand for plant-based eggs, manufacturers, start-ups, SMEs, and even established players are testing and working on the development of prototypes of imitation eggs. The major goal of such companies regarding plant-based eggs is to replicate the functionality, taste, texture, cost, and availability of conventional eggs. Plant-based eggs have several advantages over conventional eggs. Plant-based eggs are produced with natural, ingredients from plants without the aid of hens. Additionally, they are allergen-free and cholesterol-free. This could be advantageous for those suffering from egg and albumin protein allergies. Plant-based eggs will not be susceptible to animal and bird-related flu such as avian flu, salmonella, etc. can be transmittable to humans too. Plant-based eggs also offer a stable solution to the high price volatility that affects the egg market. The manufacture of plant-based eggs claims to be more environmentally sustainable than the production techniques revolving around conventional egg production. Many emerging start-ups produced plant-based eggs to satisfy the increasing demand and reduce the environmental impact. Various start-ups such as Just Egg, Simply Egg, Perfeggt, Zero egg, Evo foods are working on the production of plant-based eggs from different plant ingredients and have commercialized their products. Plant-based eggs come in two very distinct forms- liquid and dried powder. The liquid counterpart of the plant-based eggs are created generally by the process of protein isolation and sold in bottles that can be used for making scrambled eggs, omelets, or baking. The dried powdered plant-based eggs are made by a process of protein fermentation or isolation processes and are still in the prototype or research stage.