Extrusion technology is opening new doors for circularity within the food industry, allowing brands to transform food waste into nutritious food products instead of fodder for landfill. Planetarians is one such brand putting the method to the test, creating high-fiber, high-protein snacks that it says can tackle childhood obesity.
Made from the by-product of oil extraction, Planetarians uses extraction and a “steam explosion” technology to break down insoluble fiber and make proteins ready available for consumption. The finished product boasts 12 grams of plant protein derived from sunflower seeds per serving and 11 grams of fiber. According to Planetarians, the products contain more protein than beef and more fiber than an apple. The best part? Kids will actually want to eat it.
This final point is the driving force behind the brand, which aims to overcome the challenges of feeding fussy eaters by offering nutrient-dense and delicious snacks that not only taste great, but also look like the traditional snacks they crave. While some children will clamor over fresh fruit, nuts and vegetables, many refuse to consume foods that look healthy, making it difficult for parents to ensure that their kids are getting all of the nutrients they need.
On the company’s website, founder Aleh Manchuliantsau explains that “while the web is full of recipes on how to make artichokes yummy, peas a pleasure and kale more attractive to your kids, parents have to constantly balance supplying nutritious meals to their families and dealing with their children, who look at these vegetables and say, ‘Looks weird. I’m not eating it.’”
Waste not, want not
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Planetarians aims to overcome this with a product portfolio of “yummy breakfast filled squares,” a mocha espresso-flavored low sugar cereal, “European style vegan bread crisps,” a rosemary-flavored gluten-free alternative to bread, and “cinnamon toast puffed chips,” a low fat, low sodium cinnamon toast snack.
So how exactly does Planetarians help combat obesity? According to the brand, the high level of fiber works like “built in portion control,” allowing kids to fill up on less — no empty calories here. The products’ protein levels also rival that of meat while boasting a much lower price point and environmental footprint, meaning parents can provide their kids with wholesome snacks without undermining their budgets — or the planet.
Planetarians is already being well received by adults and kids alike with the brand’s first production run selling out. The company is now accepting preorders for its sample packs. Schools can also request sample packs by filling out a sample request form.