What to know

Vegan Bacon Is Here

Vegan Bacon Is Here

Researchers have found seaweed that tastes like bacon and is twice as healthy as kale.

Researchers at Oregon State University have patented a new strain of seaweed that allegedly tastes exactly like bacon once cooked. And if that is not amazing enough, the seaweed, which is a form of red marine algae, has twice the nutritional value of kale.

The discovery was not done on purpose however.

One Chris Langdon, an Oregon State researcher, and his team, were growing different strains of seaweed trying to find a good food source for sea snails, or abalone, a popular Asian seafood. While trying to find the snail-food-algae, they stumbled upon the translucent, red, lettuce-like weed. The strain is in fact a new type of red algae native to the Pacific and Atlantic coastlines.

It wasn’t until an associate of Langdon, Chuck Toombs, visited his office and saw the seaweed that he fully realized the potential of it. According to Oregon State press, Toombs began working with the university’s Food Innovation Center, believing that there is potential for a whole industry around the seaweed in Oregon. There, they started looking into creating a cuisine centered around the bacon seaweed.

There will be some time however before you can find this at your local grocery store since it is not commercially produced yet. But the team believes that seaweed that tastes like bacon would be particularly popular with vegan and vegetarian markets, and we are sure communities that refrain from eating pork products might appeal to it as well.

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