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22 November, 2017 - 12:02 By Kate Sweeney

Egg-citing opportunity cracked by high protein drinks startup

Peck drink

A Suffolk startup has received a second cash boost of £10,000 to help develop its new product thanks to the Eastern Agri-Tech Growth Initiative. 

Having previously received a £40,000 Innovation Grant Initiative to advance its R & D, this marks a second stage of project development. 

PECK Drinks, the brain child of Matthew Havers from Kings Farm Foods, is about to embark on an exciting phase of progression thanks to an Agri-Tech grant, from the Greater Cambridge Greater Peterborough Local Enterprise Partnership. 

Launching a high-protein beverage, PECK has created a convenience food format for egg whites, acknowledging their complete source of nutrition, and fulfilling a previously overlooked gap in the health food market. 

Matt Havers said: “The forces that are driving a lot of food creation is the need for new, convenient and healthy. Eggs have had loads of the latter, but not much of the first two. 

“Egg consumption has grown year on year with few new applications, innovations or product launches. We figure if we only tapped into those who are already into their eggs we would be winners; however we believe the market for our drinks is so much bigger than that.”

Martin Lutman, Eastern Agri-Tech Growth Initiative programme manager, added: “Tapping into the highly profitable protein drinks arena, and combining it with a new narrative for convenience food, PECK has reinvented the egg and given a new value to snack foods.”

Innovation around the convenience of egg produce is currently lacking in the marketplace, as the typical mentality of food producers is that eggs represent a difficult food group to manage safely, and to generate any profitable volume from.

This means people are missing out on their sustainable, nutritional benefits, in favour of ‘health’ alternatives that, despite being easier to process, often contain artificial ingredients to supplement their value. 

By boldly approaching the processing challenges surrounding eggs, including high heats, time shortages and food safety concerns, and reinventing traditional food processing methods, PECK has managed to change efficiencies and achieve something no other company in the egg space would ordinarily be willing to try. 

Investment in the new equipment will enable PECK to successfully generate yield volumes to replicate their innovation at mass consumer level, delivering convenient egg-based snacks straight from the farm to the supermarket. 

The future vision for PECK is to help crack the national concern over food wastage at the retailer level. Eggs are one of the many food groups subject to unnecessary wastage because one broken egg deems a box of otherwise healthy eggs no longer acceptable to sell.

PECK aims to redeem these healthy eggs direct from retailers and recycle them in their egg-based products. 

The grant will also help support future diversification into other product types including the possibility of a whole egg protein drink that will build on the health benefits of the existing idea. There are also cross-category opportunities that may well allow for a snack bar that harnesses the nutritional power of the egg. 

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