How do you like your eggs in the morning? One might say boiled or fried, but how about plant-based? Enter OnlyEg, an egg substitute made of legumes.
It was created by Singapore-based food technology start-up Float Foods and is billed as the first of its kind in Asia. Based on photos, it looks a lot like the breakfast staple. It comes as two components: a liquid ‘egg white’ and a spherical yellow ‘yolk.’
It is set to be commercially available by 2022.
The concept of vegan eggs is not at all new but Float Foods claims to be the first in Asia to create a whole egg substitute that offers both an egg yolk and egg white replacement. Existing alternatives in the market include liquid blends that are mostly used in scrambled egg or omelette recipes. Meanwhile, OnlyEg can be cooked in multiple styles including sunny side up, over easy, and soft boiled. It can be used for baking and cooking. While it claims to function like a chicken egg, Float Foods also aims for the artificial egg to have an even higher nutritional value.
Interest in plant-based egg substitutes has been growing rapidly and was reportedly the fastest growing plant-based category in 2019, with a 192 percent growth over the previous year.
The early stages of the plant-based movement were largely driven by concerns over animal rights but in recent years, people have been making the switch because of environmental and health benefits. People believe that plant-based substitutes for meat and animal products can help them transition to a vegetarian or vegan diet.
“Eggs play a major role in Asian cuisine,” Float Foods founder and CEO Vinita Choolani said in a press release. “Ultimately, our goal is to apply food science and innovation to build plant-based products such as OnlyEg that enable cultural relevance and contribute to a sustainable food ecosystem that can be a part of Singapore’s future food plans.”
Asia remains one of the biggest consumers of chicken eggs in the world, with 60 percent of global production taking place in the region as of 2016. Many of the region’s iconic dishes — from the nasi lemaks of Malaysia to the silogs of the Philippines — have eggs as a main ingredient.