Ormond Beach manufacturer Future Foods Enterprises has recently expanded its distribution to a national level, and leading the helm is a celebrity chef that has been featured on several culinary reality shows.
Chef Robyn Almodovar joined Future Foods and its People and Our World plant-based protein product line as its corporate chef seven months ago. Future Foods is now distributing its product through Dot Foods, which according to a press release, sells to approximately 4,100 distributors in the food industry.
With more people changing the way they consume proteins, and with more public interest in the plant-based industry, Almodovar said this is the direction culinary arts is heading. Future Foods intrigued her, she said, because as a chef, she wants to learn as much as possible.
“When I found out about Future Foods and PAOW, I said, ‘Wow, I am far from a vegan, or a vegetarian, way far — the complete opposite — so this is a great change for me to go to,’” Almodovar said.
The Le Cordon Bleu graduate has previously served as a corporate chef for The Stanley Hotel in Colorado and owns a food truck called Palate Party in South Florida. In 2015, she competed and won on the Food Network’s Chopped and Cutthroat Kitchen and later went on to star in season 10 and season 17 of Hell’s Kitchen on FOX.
The Ormond Beach Observer spoke with Almodovar on Thursday, June 10, about her new endeavor with Future Foods and PAOW.
When did you know that you wanted to be a chef?
I didn’t. I’ve always known that I liked to cook. I didn’t know I wanted to be a chef until late informercials on Le Cordon Bleu when I was in cosmetology school kept on going when I was 24, and I was like, “Maybe this is a calling.”
You’ve been on several TV shows, won a couple of them as well. What is one memorable experience that stands out to you?
I think that when I starred in Hell’s Kitchen and just the journey of being on season 17 of Hell’s Kitchen almost 10 years, the journey of how the culinary world has come and how before making vegan food and vegetarian food was always looked down upon, and now it’s a creativity level that can come from manipulating ingredients. Especially with PAOW, we can manipulate our ingredients to make anything.
How have you seen people’s perception toward plant-based foods change in the last five years?
I think the last five years people have definitely been more aware and more concerned into what they’re putting into their bodies. I’m an 80s child, and I know that chicken breasts feel different now than what they did back then.
In the past seven months with PAOW and Future Foods, what’s been one thing that’s gotten you excited about the job?
I think the one thing that really gets me excited about working with Future Foods and PAOW is seeing this amazing product that’s coming out of the facility in Ormond Beach, and knowing that no one could really touch our product out there. They might be comparable, but no one can compare to what we’re producing in the facility.
How does your new role with Future Foods line up with your love of culinary arts?
I know that the way Future Foods pumps my passion is because this is something new and exciting. I’m able to see how this product is taken from a soy bean and crushed down into a powder and mixed with two other ingredients to form an amazing product. Being a chef, it really excites me to see how you can manipulate this product into so many different kinds of textures and flavor profiles.
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