Walnuts have been consumed for over 7,000 years and California Walnuts are a high-quality, food safe, versatile ingredient that provides Omega-3 ALA, protein, fibre, and a host of micronutrients to new recipes and products that consumers recognize and will meet clean label initiatives. With the interest in healthier foods on the rise in the UK, and plant-based meat alternatives more in demand, food manufacturers like Nestle, Unilever, and even McDonald’s have offerings meeting consumer demand.

15% of the UK’s population are vegan, vegetarian or pescatarian, and the continued rise in healthy ingredients and plant-based foods has resulted in over 800 new meat substitute product launches across retail channels across Europe and the trend seems to be gathering pace (source: Mintel). This figure does not include reformulated existing products. During 2019, the number of trademarks registered for new vegan food and drink products in the UK more than doubled to a record high for everything from ice cream to meat-free burgers. According to UnivDatos Market Insights, the global plant-based food market is anticipated to reach a market valuation of US$ 38.4 billion by 2025 increasing at a CAGR of 8.94% in the course of the forecast period (2019–2025).

California walnuts has a promising future as an ideal ingredient for this increasing global trend. California Walnuts are lighter in colour and have a milder taste compared to walnuts from other origins. California Walnuts have a soft, creamy, texture which makes them an excellent meat-replacement. They provide that ‘umami’ flavour characteristic associated with meat products and thanks to their high healthy polyunsaturated fat content, also provide the mouthfeel consumers are looking for. With the right spices, additional ingredients, and processing and/or cooking techniques, plant-based meat alternatives using California walnuts will create a new taste sensation as a ground meat replacement, burger patty, sausage patty or even bacon-flavoured bits. They are the perfect showcase ingredient for new plant -based product development opportunities, both savoury and sweet. Try adding walnuts to to sauces and spreads as a wholesome thickener; or as a plant-based milk base to ice cream or frozen desserts. California walnuts provide a well-known ingredient with 30 years of scientific health studies supporting walnuts contribution to health. California Walnuts are the only nut that has a qualified health claim in the EU specific to heart health.

The California Walnut Industry, which has maintained an exceptional food safety record for over a century, continues its commitment to producing high-quality, nutritious walnuts for production for use in snacks, menus, and innovative new products to meet today’s evolving consumer demands.


As walnuts will absorb aromas from other foods such as onions, store shelled or unshelled walnuts in airtight containers and store in a cool, dry place. To keep at optimal freshness, keep them in a refrigerator, or for longer storage, in a freezer for up to a year.

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