ST. LOUIS — ICL, a specialty minerals company headquartered in Tel Aviv, Israel, opened its latest facility in St. Louis. The new alternative protein facility will produce plant-based meat substitute for use by food companies, foodservice distributors, restaurants and grocery chains.

The 10,000-square-foot facility represents a significant investment in ICL’s global Food Specialties portfolio, according to the company. It was constructed on ICL’s existing production campus in St. Louis and is expected to produce more than 15 million lbs of product each year at full capacity.

 “This new facility will help meet the growing demand for innovative plant-based foods and meat alternatives — especially ones that deliver an eating experience similar to that of conventional meat products,” said Chris Millington, executive vice president of food and phosphate specialty products at ICL. “Food manufacturers are looking for meatless options that will offer sustainable, functional and nutritional value in the meat-alternative category, and we’re proud to provide them with a solution.”

The facility will transform plant protein into fibers that have a meat-like texture for use in a variety of food applications to replace meat, poultry or seafood, he added. The fibers offer a clean flavor and natural texture, and the finished meat substitute is allergen-free, kosher- and halal-certified and non-GMO.

“From health issues to environmental and sustainability concerns, there are many reasons for the trending movement toward more sustainable lifestyle and diet choices,” said Paul Petersen, global alternative proteins leader for ICL Food Specialties. “Our team is committed to keeping up with these trends and innovating in areas beyond traditional meat alternatives.”

ICL’s Food Specialties business brings more than 75 years of experience to the food industry. The company has offices and facilities across the globe, employing more than 800 people in the United States. In addition to its 19-acre production campus, ICL has corporate offices and a research and innovation hub in the St. Louis region.