Food In Canada

New partnership to develop farm-to-fork ecosystem for lupin in Canada

December 16, 2021   by Food in Canada staff

Today, Protein Industries Canada (PIC) announced a project to establish lupin as a staple crop in the Canadian agrifood sector.

Lupin Platform, Inc., Hensall Co-op, Lumi Foods and Puris have come together to establish an integrated ecosystem to increase the production of, and processing of lupin in Canada. The $7.3-million project will develop a lupin supply and value chain, from crop production through to the development and manufacturing of functional ingredients and products.

“The farm-to-fork ecosystem we’re announcing today for lupin – a unique pulse, new to Canada and with highly valued protein properties – will establish a foothold for this crop, and give our agriculture and agri-food sector a competitive advantage both domestically and internationally,” said Marie-Claude Bibeau, agriculture and agri-food minister. “Canadian consumers will benefit in having new food products to choose from on grocery store shelves, while the Canadian agriculture sector will see increased diversity and market opportunity.”

The consortium, with each member representing a link in the value chain, will focus on identifying the lupin varieties that are best suited for Canadian growing conditions, developing and improving seed cleaning and processing technologies, determining the value of lupin’s co-products, and creating new food formulations and products.

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“Lupin is an exciting new crop for Canada that will bring new value to Canada’s plant-based food and ingredient ecosystem, benefiting the entire value chain, from farmers to end consumers,” said Bill Greuel, CEO of PIC.

The project will be led by Lupin Platform, a new company that will oversee the development of the ecosystem and contribute inputs and expertise to activities related to agronomic research, commercial-scale lupin production, protein extraction and functional characterization, and ingredient and value-added product development such as lupin beverages and a baking mix.

Hensall Co-op, one of Canada’s largest farmer co-operatives, will take on agronomic research and testing for the novel crop, as well as utilize in-house equipment and know-how to develop effective and scalable cleaning, dehulling and milling technologies that are suitable for commercialization at the processing level. Additionally, Hensall hopes to develop data related to the feed value of lupin in monogastric and ruminant nutrition.

The novel lupin ingredients will then be used by Lumi Foods and Puris to develop new plant-based products for consumers across North America.

Lumi Foods (formerly Blue Heron Creamery), a high-end plant-based cheese and products manufacturer, will utilize lupin ingredients in their proprietary cheesemaking process. Over the past three years, the company has been exploring different ingredients to develop a nut-free line of dairy alternative products, and lupin’s high protein content makes it an attractive ingredient in formulation.

Puris, a company that works at the intersection of growers, makers and eaters to deliver sustainable nutrition from plants, will support the effort through innovation and product development to deliver planet-friendly foods, great taste and accessibility.


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