Vegetable protein products are common in the world – an alternative to milk and meat. They are used as hired workers for inventors or as an addition to them one at a time: some care about the environment, others about their health, others simply pay tribute to fashion. According to the consulting company ATKearney, by 2040 vegetable proteins will occupy 25% of the international dietary protein consumption market.
There are two types of protein products: protein concentrates with a protein content of about 70% protein isolates with a protein content of 90%, refined from fat, protein and fiber. Concentrates are mainly used in the production of feed, they require less deep cleaning and simpler equipment. For food production, protein insulators from three plants are mainly used – wheat, peas and soybeans. In Russia, the bulk of plant isolates are imported from Europe and China. Domestic soy isolate is produced only at the Blagoveshchensk enterprise of the Amursky Oil Extraction Plant, which hides less than 10% of the incidence of the Russian market. Pea protein is imported in full from abroad, despite the fact that the country ranks in terms of fiber and exports this crop after Canada. Last year in Russia, exports of grains and legumes for peas exceeded 50% in value terms.
“We are focused on replacing the import of pea isolate to Russia. And do not stop there – go for export to the countries of Asia and the Middle East, where there is a great need for cheap high-quality protein,” says Anna Nenakhova, CEO of Uralchem Innovation. This company, on the initiative of the Skolkovo Innovation Center, is launching a pilot plant for the production of an isolate with the participation of more than 80% from pea flour. About 150 kg of protein from 800 kg of pea flour are obtained per day at full load, about 30 tons per year. Uralchem has invested 300 million rubles in the development and creation of this unit.