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A flexible approach to Fine Food

Posted on : 28 April 2021

Remember when mushrooms were promoted as ‘meat for vegetarians? Nowadays it’s not just vegetarians looking for another source of ‘meat’ with plant-based produce popping up in all aisles of the supermarket – from the dairy section to the meat department, with the biscuit and lolly aisles also well-stocked.

The benefits of a plant-based diet include weight loss, heart health, reduced risk of diabetes, a boost for your brain, and a reduction in your environmental impact. A plant-based diet is predominantly whole, minimally processed plant foods such as fruit and vegetables, grains, legumes, nuts, and seeds.

Plant-based products include vegan meat patties and sausages, vegan chocolate, coconut cream frozen desserts and yoghurts, almond or oat milks, dairy-free cheese, and even meat-free bacon.

Welcoming plant-based products into the Sydney Royal Fine Food Show this year, entries will be judged in a broad field of ‘plant-based’ rather than having non-meat sausages go up against meat sausages or dairy-free desserts taking on traditional dairy desserts.

With consumers taking on more of a flexitarian approach to food, it follows that the Sydney Royal competitions would do the same thing – the recognition and rewarding of Australian producers is the end-goal rather than just the assessment of traditional paddock to plate produce.

The growth in plant-based diets is a reflection of the food sector and consumers in general. Many consumers want an alternative to ‘meat’ and have a ‘Flexitarian’ approach to their daily diet. We want the Australian agricultural sector to be the first choice for ingredients, so by including a new plant-based product class in the competition, we hope to not only reflect consumer trends but also drive them by encouraging consumers to get behind Aussie farmers and food manufactures”, Lachlan Bowtell, Fine Food Committee Chair.

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