An Edmonton plant-based manufacturing company is aiming to enter the global market by being one of the few producers of alternative liquid eggs.
Nabati Foods, which produces plant-based versions of foods such as cheeses, cheesecakes and meat alternatives, announced the completion of its manufacturing facility on May 11, allowing the company to ramp up production.
Company CEO Ahmad Yehya said the facility is able to manufacture at least five times what the company was able to achieve before, allowing the business to explore new ways to grow. He said Nabati Foods is aiming to be the first company in Canada to make a plant-based liquid egg.
“We are launching our plant-based egg this summer,” Yehya said. “There are only two other companies on this planet that make plant-based liquid eggs. We will be the third. We’re really excited that we developed something that is really close as possible to eggs. We hope to have that product available globally. We want to make our brand global.”
The Edmonton facility produces plant-based cheeses and meats but Yehya said the plant-based eggs will be manufactured at another location, which will be announced at a later date.
Currently, Nabati Foods is available in Canadian and U.S. grocery stores.
Demand for alternatives to animal-based foods has been growing for years. The global plant-based protein market alone is anticipated to grow to $10.8 billion by 2022, according to a 2019 report by Statistics Canada.
Roughly 40 per cent of Canadians are incorporating more plant-based foods into their diets, the report shows.
Founded in 2014, Nabati Foods operated in a small pilot facility before outgrowing the space within a few years. The company currently employs about 13 people but Yehya said they’re aiming to have a workforce of 22.
He said he and his partner grew up eating mostly plant-based foods but never thought more of it until they were older and were trying to find alternatives.
“It was really hard to find something,” Yehya said. “So we made our own stuff at home and we shared it with family and friends. From there, we decided to start a business and offer our products out.”
He said he’s also against the mistreatment of animals and believes plant-based products are more environmentally friendly.
Although the company has ambitions to expand across the globe, Yehya said Edmonton will always be his home.
“This is where we’re headquartered,” he said. “(Edmonton) is a great city. It’s very entrepreneurial. That’s the best way I can describe it. Even compared to Calgary, I like (Edmonton) a lot more. Nothing against Calgary. It’s just there’s a vibe (here). You can only call one place home.”