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March Newsletter C-Suite Q & A

Q & A with Jasmine Sutherland, President of Texas Food Solutions, HPP Toller & VP of Production for Perfect Fit Meals, maker of fresh, high-protein ready meals

Texas Food Solutions (TFS) is the first company in Houston, Texas, to provide commercial High Pressure Processing (HPP) tolling to Southeast Texas and Louisiana.

Perfect Fit Meals are fresh, ready meals that are high-protein, made with nutrient-dense vegetables and lean animal protein––most meals average about 30g protein. Every meal is nutritionally balanced by a dietitian and is fridge-to-fork in 2 minutes.

Jasmine Sutherland is the President of Texas Food Solutions & VP of Production for Perfect Fit Meals.

1.
Q: How many years have you been working with HPP technology?
A: We have owned machines since 2015 but have been working in HPP since 2011.

2.
Q: Where did you go to college and was your background what led you to work with HPP?
A: I have undergrad degrees in Culinary Arts & Culinary Nutrition, with a focus on Food Science, from Johnson & Wales. I completed grad work and my Registered Dietitian credentials at The University of Houston. Since then, I have worked in food manufacturing.

3.
Q: How did you first learn about HPP?
A: I learned about HPP while developing products in college. At that time, it wasn’t a very accessible or affordable concept. It has come a long way. Years later when we were looking to put truly fresh, clean label concepts into the market place, it was our technology of choice.

4.
Q: Why did TFS decide to buy a JBT/Avure HPP machine?
A: We wanted to put down a larger volume machine in a similar size footprint to what we already owned, so we started looking at a 525 from Avure. The brilliant industry feedback we had heard on quick access to parts and service sealed the deal.

5.
Q: What are some of the most interesting or promising new foods or beverages you see using HPP now?
A: Alternative protein products are starting to really cement themselves as a major category. Non-hummus, plant-based dips will see a huge increase over the next year. CBD products are seeing regulatory struggles in the US but will grow once that is sorted.

6.
Q: TFS also produces its own product, Perfect Fit Meals, a line of nutrient-dense, high-protein ready meals. With Perfect Fit Meals, what HPP benefits do your customers find the most compelling?
A: Consumers are requesting cleaner labels, and convenience while retailers and wanting a longer shelf life, and less public recalls. HPP allows us to use pressure as a tool for product development. We are able to make a cleaner label product that we can guarantee is safe.

7.
Q: As an HPP toller, what are the top three reasons you see sparking HPP’s fast growth with food manufacturers ?
A: HPP is an affordable insurance policy against recalls. Consumers are becoming more educated and asking for cleaner, safer products. The mystery surrounding running the machines is unraveling, and manufacturers are realizing that with great support and access to spare parts, the machines aren’t as difficult to operate and maintain.

8.
Q: What HPP products do you have in your fridge?
A: Perfect Fit Carb Conscious Meals, hummus, smoked brisket, & lots of baby food.