Azuma Foods Launches Plant-Based Seafood Range “Future Fish” in Japan – vegconomist

Azuma Foods, a Japanese food manufacturer with over 50 years of experience creating innovative Japanese cuisine, has launched a new plant-based seafood lineup, Future Fish, under its brand Green Surf.

The new range comprising tuna, salmon, and squid aims to offer alternatives made without animal ingredients to lessen the strain on marine resources caused by fishing while helping consumers reduce their seafood consumption, says the Japanese food manufacturer.

“We aim to create a new era or next generation of seafood”

The Azuma Foods R&D team crafted the new plant-based fish alternatives using konjac (a starchy root vegetable) flour, salt, locust bean gum (seeds from the carob tree), and trehalose (a type of sugar) to mimic the authentic taste and texture of real fish.

The fishless products come refrigerated and sliced. They can be used in multiple recipes, including sashimi, marinated fish bowls, sushi, temaki, Hawaiian poke bowls, or prepared like seasoned raw fish.

Plant-based salmon by Azuma Foods
© Azuma Foods – Green Surf

Next generation of seafood

Green Surf’s portfolio includes plant-based plant unagi, crab cakes, shrimp, crab flakes, and crab meat for food service, offering a sustainable alternative to seafood favorites.

All Green Surf products have vegan certification from NPO Veggie Project Japan, and they are certified as Maternity Food by the Japan Maternity Food Association, making them an attractive option for women during the maternity period, including pregnancy and lactation. 

“We aim to create a new era or next generation of seafood that does not use animal-derived ingredients,” says the company.

Aiming to reduce the environmental impact of meat production, Azuma Foods has also launched another brand, Soy Meinsler, offering alternatives to beef, chicken, and pork made with soy and other plant-based ingredients. Soy Meinsler’s products are vegan, maternity-certified, and Halal.

A bowl of plant-based meat and noodles
© Azuma Foods-Soy Meister

Plant-based food for all

The Japanese vegan food market is projected to exhibit a growth rate (CAGR) of 11.2% during 2023-2028, according to the IMARC Group, a leading US market research company.

While still considered a niche market compared to European countries, growing awareness of health, wellness, and sustainability concerns are driving the growth of the vegan food market in Japan. Plant-based diets are associated with various health benefits, including reduced risk of chronic diseases, weight management, and slowing aging.

Another food giant, the Japanese ham manufacturer NH Foods, is also developing plant-based tuna, fish fries, and shrimp, highlighting the health benefits and the sustainability of its products compared to animal sources. 

Azuma Foods has facilities in the US, Canada, and China, where it offers retail and B2B seafood products, including gluten-free, kosher, and vegan options, combining the best Japanese and world cuisine. 

Azuma Foods
© Azuma Foods

Green Surf says its next-generation products are for people trying to reduce their seafood consumption for various reasons, such as environmental concerns, supporting sustainable development goals, interest in diverse food options like Halal and vegan, or for health reasons.

“Of course, this product can be enjoyed by people of all ages and genders, even those who are not mentioned above!” states Azuma Foods.

In the US, Azuma Foods will be at Natural Products Expo West in Anaheim, California, this March, showcasing its vegan alternatives at booth #4694, Hall D.

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