Mashing together vegan and paleo eating habits might sound like an oxymoron. After all, the paleo diet is fairly meat-heavy, a big no-no for veganism. Veganism, on the other hand, happily includes highly-processed foods like oreos and soda, which is a big rule-breaker for the paleo diet. But as much as these two diets might initially appear very different, they do contain some common ground. In fact, the “pegan” diet, which is a combination of both approaches, has seen a recent boost in popularity.
The pegan diet might seem a little confusing at first, but this is a movement that can also offer plenty of potential to inventive food industry professionals willing to create whole new snacks and food items.
What does the pegan diet look like, and how could aspiring food industry professionals create items that fit within it? Continue reading to find out!
What the Pegan Diet Is
Given their popularity, many people considering food quality training might already know quite a bit about the paleo diet and veganism. Veganism is all about avoiding meat and animal products like cheese, eggs, and milk. The paleo diet, on the other hand, is all about eating in a manner similar to our prehistoric ancestors, which means cutting out highly processed foods, grains, dairy, and even starchy vegetables like potatoes.
While both approaches include and exclude some very different items, there are some aspects that they share. Both include plenty of vegetables, and both avoid dairy. Many people following these diets are also often concerned about healthy eating as well, and may prefer minimally processed food. It is this common ground that the pegan diet occupies.
The pegan diet keeps aspects of the paleo diet such as avoiding gluten, refined sugars, and dairy. It also keeps vegetables centre-stage in a manner similar to veganism. However, it also relaxes some of the rules that lie in the middle ground between both diets. Eggs and meat, for example, are allowed in small amounts—so long as they are sustainably raised. Fruit intake is limited. And beans—a staple of many vegan dishes and a no no in paleo diets—is also allowed but only in limited amounts.
How Professionals with Food Quality Training Can Design Pegan Products
Designing products that fit neatly within the rules of peganism is no easy feat. However, that’s not to say that it can’t be done. Plenty of paleo-friendly and vegan snacks already exist, so creating pegan products is certainly something that crafty professionals with a food safety diploma can achieve.
Developing a pegan product could mean creating frozen prepared smoothies or soups. Veggie noodles also make a great alternative to traditional pasta. Dairy alternatives can also offer a world of opportunity, as can gluten-free flours. Snack foods like beef jerky, olives, protein bars, kale chips, guacamole, and more could all work well within the pegan diet, and offer quick on-the-go options.
However, it’s important to keep in mind that these buyers will likely be searching for non GMO and sustainable products. Including ingredients that fit this description could be a great way to grab the attention of buyers. In addition, choosing to avoid sweeteners or opt for natural sweeteners will also be important when crafting these products. Maple syrup, used in small amounts, can help to add a dash of sweetness while still keeping with pegan principles.
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