Kircali Ata, S., Shi, J. K., Yao, X., Hua, X. Y., Haldar, S., Chiang, J. H., & Wu, M. (2023). Predicting the Textural Properties of Plant-Based Meat Analogs with Machine Learning. Foods, 12(2), 344. https://doi.org/10.3390/foods12020344
Plant-based meat analogs are food products that mimic the appearance, texture, and taste of real meat. The development process requires laborious experimental iterations and expert knowledge to meet consumer expectations. To address these problems, we propose a machine learning (ML)-based framework to predict the textural properties of meat analogs. We introduce the proximate compositions of the raw materials, namely protein, fat, carbohydrate, fibre, ash, and moisture, in percentages and the “targeted moisture contents” of the meat analogs as input features of the ML models, such as Ridge, XGBoost, and MLP, adopting a build-in feature selection mechanism for predicting “Hardness” and “Chewiness”. We achieved a mean absolute percentage error (MAPE) of 22.9%, root mean square error (RMSE) of 10.101 for Hardness, MAPE of 14.5%, and RMSE of 6.035 for Chewiness. In addition, carbohydrates, fat and targeted moisture content are found to be the most important factors in determining textural properties. We also investigate multicollinearity among the features, linearity of the designed model, and inconsistent food compositions for validation of the experimental design. Our results have shown that ML is an effective aid in formulating plant-based meat analogs, laying out the groundwork to expediently optimize product development cycles to reduce costs.
Attribution 4.0 International (CC BY 4.0)
This research / project is supported by the Agency for Science, Technology and Research (A*STAR) - IAF-PP
Grant Reference no. : H20H8a002