In addition to meat and plant-based products, a completely new burger patty is now available throughout Austria. BILLA and BILLA PLUS, Austria’s second most widespread supermarket, are bringing Viennese food pioneer ZIRP Insects’ EAT FOR THE FUTURE burger patty to their freezer shelves in over 800 stores across Austria. The patty consists of more than one-third buffalo mealworms, provided by Ynsect Human Nutrition and Health’s AdalbaPro ingredient range, which are cultivated in our vertical farm in the Netherlands.
Strong partnership with BILLA and BILLA PLUS
The burger patties are offered in 200g packs of two on the frozen food shelves of over 800 BILLA and BILLA PLUS stores. “Insects are more than a food trend and are considered a particularly climate-friendly protein source. Interest in sustainable nutrition and alternative foods is growing noticeably, so we are pleased that our customers can now experience innovative product creations such as the EAT FOR FUTURE burger at BILLA and BILLA PLUS across Austria,” says Markus Kuntke, Head of Trend and Innovation Management at REWE Group Austria.
A nutritious, sustainable burger available in Austrian supermarkets
With the ZIRP Burger Patty, which consists of almost 40% buffalo worms, the benefits of entomophagy – as the consumption of insects is called – are now to be offered to customers of BILLA and BILLA PLUS throughout Austria in a way that is suitable for everyday use. Two years were invested in the development of the product. “This was exciting pioneering work”, says Christoph Thomann, Founder & CEO of ZIRP Insects, “Insects are excellent for further processing. They have a subtle nutty flavor and are very easy to integrate into popular recipes when ground.” Combined with mushrooms, pea protein and a specially created recipe, the result is a hearty flavor that is reminiscent of meat but doesn’t claim to mimic meat 1:1. “At the end of the day, the insect burger is a new category of its own that also stands out from plant-based products in terms of taste.”
Considering the environmental impact of high meat consumption in Western industrial societies, insects as food are considered a nutritious, sustainable protein source. The reason for this is the great ecological and health potential of insects, which are characterized primarily by a high-quality protein composition as well as their high content of micronutrients. The actual impetus for the use of insects as food was given back in 2013 by a call from the FAO (Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations). “The fact that globalized meat production is a major driver of greenhouse gas emissions has been sufficiently known for a long time,” Thomann said. “Despite the hype on meat substitutes, we are missing out on diversity. We welcome plant-based foods, but believe they alone cannot meet the demands of global protein supply.”
We thank our partner ZIRP Insects and BILLO supermarkets for this fantastic opportunity to enlarge our impact in Austria.