Empty egg box

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Soaring costs have prompted egg farmers to stop production

Egg shortages have prompted bakery manufacturers to trial plant-based egg alternatives, according to aquafaba supplier Oggs.

The business, which supplies a plant-based egg alternative made from chickpea water, said it has been conducting trials with what it described as two of the UK’s largest bakery manufacturers.

Oggs said the trials have been prompted in part by the current egg shortage and by the longer-term rising cost of eggs.

The egg industry has been dealing with ‘unprecedented’ pressures, according to trade body The British Egg Industry Council. Soaring costs have caused many egg farmers to cease production rather than face the risk of losing money on every egg they produce, while avian influenza has added to the strain on producers.

Oggs said the bakery manufacturers it was talking to use liquid egg primarily for sponge cakes.

“They have found that the biggest gain in swapping eggs for Oggs Egg Alternative Aquafaba is that it can be used as a direct swap into their current processes, as an ambient product,” explained Oggs founder Hannah Carter.

“Recently, we’ve worked on a lemon sponge cake and the results have shown significant improvements in flavour in early testing.”

Hannah Carter Oggs

Source: Oggs

Oggs founder Hannah Carter

She insisted Oggs was not looking to “vegan-ise” products and that a partial swap such as 20% eggs for an alternative made a significant difference to the reliance on animal products in manufacturing.

“We’re able to provide a practical solution at this time and we’re focussed on investing in longer term partnerships with manufacturers to drive positive change,” Carter added.

“We see it as part of our mission to create interesting, tasty plant-based alternative foods, which work just as well, taste just as good and require fewer resources from our planet.”

Oggs said benefits of its egg alternative include a 95% reduction in saturated fats and 85% reduction in calories when compared to eggs, and an 85% reduction in carbon impact. Alongside its egg alternative, Oggs produces a vegan baked goods range stocked in major UK retailers.