The process of fermentation has been around for many centuries. Every chef knows: good and, especially, consistent fermentation is of the utmost importance. The food innovation of Verstegen and Swirling Spoons and Skillpack's processing technology know-how makes consistent, safe fermentation a reality. These are all Dutch companies. "Our approach is unique in Europe."
Consumers are becoming increasingly aware of healthy choices and sustainability. That is why Verstegen came up with an idea to enable vegetables to be stored for up to four months. Instead of fermenting the products in preserving jars, Skillpack's deep track machines are used.
Jeroen van der Graaf, Creative Innovation Manager at Verstegen Spices & Sauces, says, “In this way, we are doing our bit to contribute to a more sustainable world. The product also tastes better." The fermenting technique also lends itself very well to processing the residual flow of vegetables.
Two days gained on the complete fermentation process
By using Skillpack's film deep track machine, Swirling Spoons' products reach complete fermentation in just three days. Before, five days was needed for this. Jeffrey Pluijmers, Skillpack's owner, says, “It is great to have thought of and now to execute this idea together."
“Before, we had to pack everything by hand. Then, regularity and structure were always at risk. Skillpack collaborated with us in coming up with an idea for automation. We can now also scale up far more easily", says Van der Graaf.
He goes on to say, “Doing business is not only about supplying the product. The new way of running a business is knowledge sharing. Then, you do not have a business relationship but a partnership. In this way, we can continue introducing innovative products to the market. These products correlate with what consumers want."
Fermented vegetables are the future
Fermentation is a process in which lactic acid bacteria are used to preserve food. Intestinal flora and the immune system benefit from this. Fermented vegetables are healthy and contain the correct type of lactobacteria. Also, the vegetables get a tangy flavor.
The Dutch have always loved sweet things. However, through the influence of Japanese and Latin American cuisines, there is now an increased interest in sour taste profiles. Van der Graaf: “We are playing in on this. We want to bring an end product to market that distinguishes itself by being especially healthy. We use food trucks, among other ways, to test new concepts. In five years' time, you will find fermented vegetables in everyone's fridge. Just wait and see!"