A €16 mil. plant-based protein production plant starts operations in Latvia

  • 2024-06-19

Golden Fields, an agricultural company operating in three Baltic States, has opened a plant-based protein facility in Liepaja, Latvia. The plant, which the business invested €16 million in, will use pea and fava beans to make plant-based proteins, pellets, fibers, starches, and flours for livestock and food production. The company is considering opening similar plants in other Baltic countries.

Mahmoud Ahmed, the CEO of Golden Fields, stated that the company that would produce the plant-based proteins is Golden Fields Alternative Protein. 

"The opening of the plant is a new milestone in Golden Fields' expansion, following the company's 2023 exclusive supply agreement with Al Dahra Group, an Abu Dhabi, UAE-based agribusiness and one of the largest forage providers worldwide," Mr. Ahmed stated. “Today, we’re also proud to announce our new collaboration with Bunge, a global leader in agribusiness and food and ingredients. They will serve in a commercial capacity to facilitate the sale of pea and faba protein given their breadth of customers, strong supply chain, leading quality assurance, and application expertise across the food and feed markets.”

“We’re excited to help customers seeking sustainable and traceable plant proteins to grow brands of any size in alt meat, pet food, animal nutrition, and more,” said Brian Douville, Vice President of Emulsifiers & Protein at Bunge. “We’ll support them with pea and faba protein concentrates made through a differentiated and simpler method that’s water-free, solvent-free, and energy-efficient and that starts with pulses from farmers engaged in regenerative agriculture like crop rotation.”   

More opportunities for Baltic farmers

According to Mr. Ahmed, Golden Fields Alternative Protein is a leading processor of pea and beans ingredients, specializing in dry-processed concentrates, starch, and flours. Most ingredients are also available in organic variants. The growing popularity of plant-based diets, shifting consumer preferences, and the move away from meat in favor of meat substitutes, particularly in industrialized nations, are the main drivers of demand for these products. 

Furthermore, he stated that the goods produced in Latvia will be derived from crops cultivated in the Baltic States.

"The Baltic markets stand to gain greatly from the opening of the plant protein facility. Better food security, access to innovative agricultural technologies, and the ability for farmers to diversify their crops and raise their incomes are all expected outcomes,” said Mr. Ahmed.

According to him, the new Liepaja facility will generate 50 employment opportunities and be able to produce about 50,000 tonnes of pea and beans annually. The pea and beans will be utilized to make flour, fiber, starch, protein pellets, and other goods that can be used to make animal feed or substitute meat.

Golden Fields is considering developing comparable facilities in additional Baltic nations. 

"We are concentrating on the Liepaja plant right now. But we're also considering constructing comparable plants in other Baltic nations. We may grow our business much more as a result", Mr. Ahmed stated.

Golden Fields is an agricultural company specializing in the production of premium quality animal feed. Golden Fields has previously invested €10 million in a roughage facility in Joniškis, Lithuania, and €7 million in a comparable plant in Lääne County, Estonia. The business collaborates with the Lithuanian cooperative "Joniškio aruodas" and the Estonian cooperative "Kevili."