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Any downsides to Qorn products?

post #1 of 21
Thread Starter 
Dh is vegetarian, but likes the taste of fake meat (fake chicken esp.). We're trying to cut down on soy, which most fake meats are made of, so we've been buying Qorn products, which taste so good. But are there considerations we don't know about? Thanks!
post #2 of 21
I do know that some people have gotten sick off eating Quorn products. However, I've had them and really liked them. I'm curious to know if anyone knows more about the products or not too!
post #3 of 21
1) Quorn products are highly processed.
2) Quorn isn't really a natural food--it's a processed fungus grown in giant vats
3) Quorn products aren't vegan (if that matters to you)
4) Many people have reported gastrointestinal or allergic reactions to Quorn.

I used to eat Quorn products before moving towards veganism, and before learning about how it is made. I recall them being pretty tasty--but the image of those vats in my head kinda turns me off now!

The Center for Science in the Public Interest has a big bone to pick with Quorn. You can read their side of the story at: http://www.cspinet.org/quorn/
post #4 of 21
What about cooking with seitan? You can even make your own--you don't need to buy the packaged kind.
post #5 of 21
We love Quorn products too. I heard that they are very popular in Europe and that the concerns here are untrue. I often wonder myself though. I can't get seitan and we are not big tofu eaters. I am interested in finding out if anyone knows more...
post #6 of 21
Yeah. I've heard of the vats of fungus thing. Well, I suppose that's how you grow what they call "mycoprotein." Any food can be made to sound gross. Mushrooms grow out of poop. Cow's milk has pus in it sometimes. Broccoli almost always has little tiny bugs in it. Etc.
If you can digest it well, go for it. I don't eat it because I don't eat eggs and they have egg whites in their products.
post #7 of 21
Quote:
Originally Posted by yogabug
We love Quorn products too. I heard that they are very popular in Europe and that the concerns here are untrue. I often wonder myself though. I can't get seitan and we are not big tofu eaters. I am interested in finding out if anyone knows more...
you can make your own wheat gluten. buy high gluten flour and mix with water. then knead it well and wash it. as you wash it, knead it some more. it will turn into this blobby thing and then you can cut it with a serrated knife and use like you would seitan.
post #8 of 21
We like Quorn also. We don't eat it very often though. It is hugely popular over here (in Europe). I've never heard of any problems with it and people here are generally pretty uptight about food, but just b/c I have heard any doesn't mean that there aren't any. :LOL

Olivia
post #9 of 21
I don't eat quorn as I am vegan but used to when I was veggie and had no probs at all. I do know a few people who get tummy upsets from it though, but I guess you would have noticed that already. Its really popular in the UK, they even sell it at Mcdonalds...
post #10 of 21
I've only got two major concerns about Quorn- I'm UK based.
1) It is a processed food, therefore IMO eat in moderation.(The fungus in vat thing is the processing...)
2) As some Quorn products contain eggs from intensively farmed hens, not all products are suitable for vegetarians.
The gastrointestinal/allergic reactions thing is news to me- I've never heard of anyone other than an egg allergy sufferer having difficulties.
HTH- oh, it can be incredibly bland. Both a positive and a negative...
post #11 of 21
Thanks for all the info. I think that the Quorn products are the best tasting out of the fake meats. I try to use as much beans, fruits and veggies, etc but with a carnivore dh and a toddler dd I find I need more. The hot dogs, "chicken" tenders and patties are really good. DH and dd both like the tenders and the patties. I haven't given dd hot dogs yet.
post #12 of 21
I've been trying to phase out processed food so I don't eat Quorn that often. However, I must say that sometimes I get a hankering for a yummy 'chicken' cutlet 'parmigiana' and the Quorn garlic breaded cutlets are so good. I have heard about how they're made but I haven't met anyone that has had an adverse reaction to them.
post #13 of 21
Thread Starter 
Thanks for your input. I think I'll keep Quorn on the table for now. As I understand it, isn't the microprotein still a whole food in the same way mushrooms are? It needs to be grown in vats, but does that entail that it is "processed"? Plants too need to be grown.

I think it's yummy too, and my dh is a vegetarian that doesn't like veggies! So I could use all the help I can.
post #14 of 21
Thread Starter 
P.S. Kava, is the recipe you gave for seitan? Would that make a meat-like food?
post #15 of 21
Quote:
Originally Posted by goepark
Thanks for your input. I think I'll keep Quorn on the table for now. As I understand it, isn't the microprotein still a whole food in the same way mushrooms are? It needs to be grown in vats, but does that entail that it is "processed"? Plants too need to be grown.
I guess it depends on how you define a "whole food." Here's how CSPI describes Quorn manufactuing:

Quote:
Far from being grown on farms, Quorn is created in giant fermentation vats where fungus (a mold called Fusarium venenatum, to be precise) is fed a diet of glucose and chemicals. Once “harvested,” it is further processed and flavored into chunks designed to imitate chicken, beef, or other foods. It is manufactured in England by Marlow Foods, a former subsidiary of drug maker AstraZeneca....

Quorn had been using deceptive terms like “mushroom in origin,” or, in England, “mushroom protein,” to describe its main ingredient. Under pressure from government authorities, it discontinued those terms but now describes the ingredient as “mycoprotein, from the fungi family,” and a “relative of mushrooms, truffles, and morels.” According to mycologists, Quorn’s fungus is as closely related to mushrooms as humans are to jellyfish.
Assuming CSPI is accurate (and in my experience, they are a pretty reputable group), for me, this is too far removed from the natural food chain or the type of organic agriculture I prefer to support--but I can see the point that many crops are grown in conditions that appear less than savory. To each their own, really. I think there are far, far worse things to eat than Quorn--but there are better things, too.
post #16 of 21
Quote:
Originally Posted by goepark
P.S. Kava, is the recipe you gave for seitan? Would that make a meat-like food?
seitan = wheat gluten. it won't look exactly like what you buy in the store since they use things to color and texturize it. but if you play around with it, you can figure it out. flour is cheap. you can cut it into pieces and fry it. it will puff up. you can put it in soups. you can freeze it and bake it. you can soak it in marinade. it's got a soft/chewy texture.
post #17 of 21
Thread Starter 
Thanks Kaydee for the info. It does make me think twice to know that the makers are an affiliate of a drug company. But I wonder, what kind of chemicals they "feed" the microprotein?

Thanks kavamamakava. I'm going to try it.
post #18 of 21
That's weird, I thought I posted this link earlier, but it isn't showing up! Anyway, here's a short, interesting, and balanced (IMO) article on Quorn that appeared in Wired magazine a few years back: http://www.wired.com/news/technology...,51842,00.html

I second the recommendation for seitan (although I have yet to try and make it from scratch . I actually have a bumper sticker on my car that says "Praise Seitan" in gothic-looking letters next to a 5-pointed star made of forks. It gets quite a few funny looks! :LOL
post #19 of 21
[I actually have a bumper sticker on my car that says "Praise Seitan" in gothic-looking letters next to a 5-pointed star made of forks. It gets quite a few funny looks![/QUOTE]

Praise Be!
post #20 of 21
Thread Starter 
Good link Kaydee. Thanks.
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