Mycoprotein is made in fermenters similar to those found in a brewery. These are 40 metres high and run continuously for five weeks at a time.
The fermenter is sterilised and filled with a water and glucose solution. Then a batch of fusarium venenatum, the fungi at the heart of Mycoprotein, is introduced.
Once the organism has started to grow a continuous feed of nutrients, including potassium, magnesium and phosphate as well as trace elements, are added to the solution. The pH balance, temperature, nutrient concentration and oxygen are all constantly adjusted in order to achieve the optimum growth rate.
The organism grows quite naturally in the presence of key nutrients (a bit like fertiliser added to crops). The organism is then gently heated and harvested as mycoprotein. During this part the ribonucleic acids are broken down and removed. Interestingly these can be dried and used as a flavouring a bit like the way that yeast extract is produced.
The mycoprotein is then seasoned and mixed with a little free range egg (or potato protein in vegan products) to help bind the mix. It is then steam cooked for about 30 minutes and then chilled, before being shaped for a variety of different products.
The product is then frozen. This is a crucial step in the process because the ice crystals help to push the fibers together, creating bundles that give mycoprotein its meat-like texture.
Mycoprotein is the main ingredient in a wide array of products sold under the Quorn brand, ranging from burgers to lasagne, deli slices to sausages.
No. Mycoprotein is made by fermenting a blend of glucose, minerals and fungi. We purchase all ingredients to a specification that they are from a non-GM source. This can be checked by the IP (Identification Preserved) process, and we also conduct PCR (polmerase chain reaction)See all FAQ's