How Hampton Creek Is Leading the Science of Food Technology

As science and medicine discover more links between food processing and disease, hundreds of suppliers are revamping their sourcing and production methods. However, few can match the strides made by a couple of young food pioneers named Joshua Tetrick and Josh Balk. A few years ago the two well-educated friends got together to try to solve problems they noticed in the global food system. Working with group of experts and funded by investors, the pair made history by founding Hampton creek, a food technology business.

Plant Based Eggs Started a Company

Tetrick and Balk began their research by working on a cheap, healthy egg substitute. With a mission of eventually eliminating food dyes, sugar, MSG, trans fats and animal products from foods, they began to study pea protein. By 2011 the company owned the patent on a plant-based egg product and its manufacturing process. Although their product tastes, feels and acts like egg, it can actually be altered the way companies like Apple update their software. This is also true of their plant-based Just Mayo, Just Cookies and Just Cookie Dough, which are sold by several popular retailers. In theory the company’s unique technology would allow them to offer version 1.0 of a product and then develop a 2.0 update that costs less and lasts longer.

Technology Is Helping to Solve Food Problems

As the two plant technology pioneers continued to investigate uses for plants, they developed a huge database. Working with a former Google expert, they founded a system that combines machine learning with biological data. The result is a program that lets researchers discover and experiment with a wide variety of species that could be used for cash crops. Their mission is to identify plants that are not only healthy food sources but will help farms succeed and even expand. By 2014 the business had indexed thousands of plants that fit their sustainability and health standards.

Recent developments in food technology have resulted in plant-based substitutes for some common products. Food pioneers have combined technology, research and the work of experts to create products that benefit consumers, farmers and the environment.