Due to its versatility as a plant-based alternative, restaurants have been able to offer a wide range of dishes that tailor to a diverse audience. Unlike other meat-alternatives that have focused on replicating beef and pork, the new market for mock-chicken presents itself as a great opportunity. As it is a new product that has just made it to market, the next steps the company could take would be to be more transparent and provide more information on the entire production process rather than solely the end-product itself.
TindleTM is a new plant-based meat alternative to conventional chicken, made up of 9 ingredients. The meat-free alternative contains water, soy, wheat gluten, wheat starch, sunflower oil, natural flavouring, coconut oil, methylcellulose and oat fibre. Having tasted Tindle myself, the comparable texture and flavour is replicated using plants. Termed as LipiTM, the chicken fat is the ‘secret’ ingredient, which consists of sunflower oil and natural flavouring to closely mimic chicken. Looking further into the methylcellulose as an ingredient, it is derived from cellulose (taken from a plant’s cell wall), which is a common binding or thickening agent in many foods.
Soya as an ingredient does pose some sustainability concerns. Much like other meat-alternatives, the reliance on soya adds some controversy when sourcing it from industrial-scale producers. Often times soya production is associated with deforestation, chemical waste resulting in nutrient pollution and unsustainable water use particularly in South America. Though, the website does not mention where they source their ingredients, thus an accurate evaluation on its entire sustainability can’t be made.
The mock chicken is advertised as being environmentally beneficial and a healthier alternative to normal chicken consumption. 100 grams of Tindle is equivalent to 120 calories which is roughly ~30-40 calories less than actual chicken. Free of hormones, antibiotics and supposedly cholesterol free, the simplistic recipe not only contributes to its comparative sustainability against other mock meats but also presents itself as a more ethical solution.
The website uses general statistics to make its case on being a more sustainable alternative, stating figures from Blue Horizon’s 2020 Environmental Impacts of Animal and Plant-Based Food Report. Environmental benefits such as 74% less land use, 88% less greenhouse gas emissions and 82% less water needed, Tindle markets itself as a product that can significantly reduce individual environmental footprints.
In terms of how its made, there is a lack of information on Tindle’s manufacturing and headquarters. Having spoken to a marketing-leader for Tindle during its launch with the Goodburger, I was informed that the research and design of Tindle happens in Singapore and its manufacturing occurs in the Netherlands. Due to the lack of information however, I am unable to provide a reliable evaluation on the company’s sustainability efforts.
Tindle is a part of Next Gen Foods, which is a plant based food tech company. Currently headquartered in Singapore, the food tech start-up aims to expand to Europe and the US in the near future. Ever since its launch on the 18th of March 2021, Tindle has partnered with popular restaurant chains and locations across Singapore. Their emergence in Singapore marks the start of their ambitions, wherein partnerships with local household names have significantly given them public attention. In terms of who makes the actual product is also unknown, except for the fact that it is produced in the Netherlands. In regards to labour force well-being, general assumptions about regulated working conditions in Singapore and the Netherlands can be made. Though, it would be beneficial to known more about the team to evaluate its overall sustainability.